During the nesting stage that many pregnant women experience, expecting moms usually start evaluating the home and making plans to get everything into the best condition possible for the baby’s arrival. However, many women fail to think about one of the main things that will affect their babies’ health for years to come — the crib mattress.
Your baby can spend up to 18 hours a day on a crib mattress during the first few months of life, according to the “Consumer Reports” magazine’s website. That makes your baby’s crib mattress more important than any other surface your baby will be on — including the floor. When it comes to crib mattresses, the higher the quality of materials, the better the mattress will be.
Organic crib mattresses have to go through a certification process to ensure a product meets the U.S. requirements for an organic label. The Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) is the certification standards a product must meet. Oregon Tilth Certified Organic (OTCO) is one of the leading organizations offering third-party certification, based on GOTS, for fiber products, such as those used in an organic crib mattress. The OTCO certification process examines materials used in organic mattresses from harvesting to manufacturing to ensure the entire product, not just the exterior surface, meets the organic requirements.
One of the main benefits of using an organic crib mattress is the absence of harmful chemicals. In a study conducted by the University of Washington, researchers were able to show a connection between asthma and chemical hypersensitivity. Multiple chemical sensitivities (MCS) is often a condition that doctors diagnose as a separate condition than asthma. Organic crib mattresses, made without chemicals, may help reduce triggers for these conditions.
Numerous studies point to health problems related to chemical pesticides and materials created by altering substances. The Organic Trade Association maintains information on studies relating to children, women and chemical pesticides. Organizations, including the University of Florida, the California Department of Health and Wake Forest University School of Medicine, report harmful effects found in children and women exposed to pesticides. Almost every study points to organic products and processes as a better option than non-organic ones.
Natural or eco-friendly products may sound like they would have the same benefits as organic crib mattresses, but these products do not go through the same certification process as an organic product. MayoClinic.com reports that a product must be 95 percent organic to earn certification approval. Products using less than 70 percent organic materials cannot have an organic label, but they can have an all-natural label. One of the main differences between organic and natural products is that some natural products use chemicals during the manufacturing chain.