Friday, May 25, 2012

Bunk Bed Safety

Bunk beds are popular bedroom furniture as they allow more open space in a room and can be fun for children. Unfortunately, every year thousands of children go to the hospital because of a bunk bed injury. Many of these injuries can be prevented through proper instructions, vigilance and child education.

Many of the recommendations made here are based on the standards of the US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). If you are serious about buying a bunk, be sure to make sure that the structure meets the CPSC standards. This is generally verified by a tag on the bed. We also strongly advise considering only bunk beds with stairs.

Make Sure Your Child is Old Enough

The child that sleeps on the top bunk should be at least 6 years of age. Children under 6 are much more likely to roll off in their sleep and may not have the coordination yet to go up and down the ladder every day. If your child is at least 6 but it particularly small, you may want to wait a year to two more.

Younger children can be on the bottom bunk, but you may want to consider a low-profile bunk bed that is closer to the ground. It’s best to have the older or more responsible child on the top bunk.


Educate Your Child

One of the easiest and most effective ways to prevent bunk bed accidents is to properly explain the rules and consequences of having a kids’ bunk bed. Let your child know that injuries can happen from bunk beds. Below are some common rules that parents make for their child to remain safe.

Rules for Bunk Bed Safety
✓ Always and only use the ladder to reach the top bunk
✓ Absolutely no jumping from the top bunk
✓ No rough play on the bunk beds
✓ Only the child that sleeps on top bunk is allowed on the top bunk OR only one person allowed on top bunk at a time


Using Guardrails

Guardrails help keep your child safe on the bunk bed. Guardrails should be on both sides of the bunk bed and should have no gaps more than 9 cm apart. Be sure that the foundation as well as the entire mattress is at least 5 inches below the top of the guardrail.


What You Can Do to Protect Your Child

  • Make sure the ceiling is high enough for the child that will be on top. 30 inches of headroom is recommended.
  • Place the bunk bed away from ceiling fans, windows, doors, smoke detectors, etc.
  • Remove furniture, hooks or protruding objects that your child would hit should they fall
  • Buy a bunk bed from a trusted, and well-recognized retailer
  • Install a nightlight so your child can safely come down the stairs when it’s dark
  • Ensure that the bunk bed is safe over time by checking it’s sturdiness with a firm shake
  • Make sure the structure is completely against the wall to avoid your child getting caught between the bunk and the wall.

About the Author: specializes in kid’s furniture online. We are committed to providing you a variety of furniture and beds with everything from kid’s loft beds to trundle beds. We encourage you to browse our site and find the bed you’re looking for!

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