A bassinet or cradle is a bed meant for babies from birth to about five months. Bassinets are generally designed to work with fixed legs, while cradles are generally designed to provide a rocking or gliding motion. After four months, babies are often transferred to a crib or cot. They are typically placed next to your bed to give you easy access to your baby throughout the night, and many are mobile so your baby can nap near you during the day.
While many moms use a crib from the start, a bassinet has multiple benefits. It certainly makes middle-of-the-night nursing sessions easier because you can reach over to pick your baby from your bed itself. Also it is very convenient for new moms recovering from delivery. Some bassinets have weight restrictions as well, which vary depending on the model you purchase.
The most popular and easily available forms of cradle in India are Bassinet, Foldable Portable Cradle, Traditional Jhula and Ghodiya Cradle.
Things to consider while buying:
- Availability of space at home
Availability of Space: If space is a constraint, portable cradle may work best for you. It is as comfortable as the traditional ones, equally safe and is good for a family who frequently travels.
Budget: An average budget range cradle is not expensive. What really needs to be considered is that a cradle has limitations on usage. If it’s a portable cradle, the baby will outgrow in 3-4months and you will have to consider other options. If it’s a bassinet, or the traditional cradle, the baby may outgrow the cradle/bassinet in 5-6 months. Once the baby is 4 months old, cradle may not be a safe option. So a transition may be required post 3-4 months age of your baby. A baby bassinet cost averages between Rs.2500 to Rs.4000 in budget range. These mostly include the mosquito net and the mattresses. A premium range baby cradle cost averages between Rs.5000-Rs.9000.
Usage: It is tricky to understand whether you should buy a cradle for your baby or directly consider buying a crib. Some parents believe in co-sleeping the baby in the infant stage in India. So, it’s important to consider what is your choice? If you plan to co-sleep the baby, then it’s more appropriate to consider a cradle-rocker converter.
The different types of baby cradle available in India are:
- New Trendy Cradles on Indian online space.
- A wooden cradle, average price Rs.5000-7000, do remember, a mattress and lines with mosquito net, the cost will increase by Rs.1000 to Rs.1500
- Baby Hammocks
PS: Do consider the fact that if you purchase a cradle or bassinet online, you will have to assemble the product yourself.
Many parents opt for a bassinet because they think a newborn or young infant will feel more comfortable in a compact space rather than a large crib. But a full-sized crib (with a fitted sheet only—no quilts, blankets, bumpers, or pillows) is the safest place for a baby. Your baby should be placed on his back to sleep, in a footed sleeper, sleep sack, or wearable blanket to keep him warm. Don’t use a loose blanket or comforter.
Analyse these points and make a choice whether you should really go for a bassinet or cradle for your newborn. If yes, then consider the above points while going for one.