4 Tips to Pick the Right Mattress for Your Child

by Rikke Randrup Skåning

Good quality sleep at night makes children both healthier and happier, and it’s key to their development and well-being. So, picking a mattress that can help ensure safe and healthy sleep for your child is really important. But how do you provide the right balance between comfort and support for your little sleepyhead? Read the 4 tips in the article to find out..


  • Pick good materials and design that can help regulate your child’s body temperature. 
  • A firm mattress allows freedom of movement, so your child does not sink in too deep. 
  • A firm mattress can also help ensure proper spinal alignment for your little one. 
  • You can do a pressure test with your hand to check the firmness of the mattress. 

Below, Physiotherapist, Rikke Randrup Skaaning, shares four good pieces of advice to help you pick the right mattress for your little one:  

1. Make Sure Your Child Does Not Get Too Hot or Cold 

"Children's sleep can easily be disrupted if they get too hot or too cold, and your child can not regulate temperature as well as you can. Therefore, it’s a good idea to pick a mattress that can help wick away heat and moisture via cut-outs or holes. Some covers also have a cooling or warming effect.” 

2. Keep the Little Back Straight 

"In my opinion, your child’s mattress should be firm and supportive to ensure proper spinal support. This means that your child’s spine should be kept in a neutral position when lying down to minimise stress and excess pressure. When your child is lying on the side, the hip and shoulders should sink slightly into the mattress, keeping the spine straight.”  
(Please see photo above as an example) 

3. Ensure Freedom of Movement 

“Other than good spinal support, a firm mattress also offers freedom of movement for your child, which is so important. Babies and young children have very fluttering movements, and they need a firm resistance in their mattress. If the mattress is soft, they can sink in too deep and might even get stuck. When children grow a little bigger and gain more control over their movements, they will not get stuck as easily, but they still need the support and feedback they get from a firm mattress.” 

4. Do a Pressure Test 

"You can easily do a simple pressure test of the mattress with your hand. What happens when you press a hand into the mattress? Does it bounce back up again like it should, or does it sink deep into the mattress? Many adults like the mattress shaping up after us, but that is not good for your child. The mattress must be firm enough to provide proper support and safety, but soft enough that your child will still feel snug and comfortable in bed.” 

Comfort, a good bedtime routine, and a sense of security are all important factors for your child’s quality of sleep at night. But even if you pick the right mattress and follow all the parenting tips out there, some children still sleep poorly. If you experience persistent sleep problems, or if you are concerned about your child’s sleep, please consult with your doctor.  

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