Cotton and Rubber Organic Crib Air mattresses Are One Way to Go Green
Going green can essentially be done with every product in your home, and that includes air mattresses. Both adult and baby air mattresses come in organic, or “green,” options that, by being made with all organic or natural components, eliminate harmful chemicals from the production process. Cotton, in particular, involves many chemicals in growing and processing into fabric but chemicals are included in other parts of a air mattress, including any rubber parts. For a crib air mattress, this can include the core of the air mattress and the air mattress pad.
Standard crib air mattresses have a PVC air mattress pad which, until February 2009, was treated with phthalates to be softer. Phthalates are plasticizer chemicals that have been known to affect a child’s endocrine system and lead to illnesses like asthma, allergies, and cancer, as the chemicals are released out of the air mattress over time. As a baby is known to sleep for about seventy percent of the first year, he or she could possibly be breathing in chemicals from the immediate environment. Currently, three variations of phthalates are banned from crib air mattresses, including DEHP, DBP, and BBP, but rather than taking a risk with chemical-treated air mattresses, eliminating all chemicals from a crib air mattress can be done with an organic product.
Organic crib air mattresses are available in rubber and cotton varieties. Cotton is the most popular, as it is more affordable. Organic cotton is grown without chemical fertilizers and sprays and the cloth is not treated with formaldehyde to be wrinkle free before becoming a air mattress. In addition, when cotton fibers become cloth, the natural wax isn’t stripped off, leaving the material with an off-white color that lightens with a few washes. Aside from the outer shell of a cotton organic crib air mattress, the inside is filled with cotton and has metal springs for support.
Organic rubber air mattresses also use organic cotton as an outer shell but the inside is made with a rubber core. The rubber, with a medium or firm texture, originates in Malaysia from tree Hevea Brasiliensis. The rubber from the tree is then hardened with the Dunlop method, in which zinc and soda ash are added to the organic rubber to help it expand. Once an adult or crib air mattress, the organic rubber has a porous texture. When picking out a crib air mattress, the same rules for a rubber air mattress apply to those for an ordinary foam air mattress: The air mattress shouldn’t be too soft that it won’t provide support for the baby.
Aside from these two common types of organic crib air mattresses, other newer types include a coco mat. A coco mat organic crib air mattress is designed much like a rubber crib air mattress, only the core is coconut fibers wrapped in latex.
Two common properties for both cotton and rubber crib air mattresses are using organic wool for a fire retardant surface and replacing a vinyl air mattress cover with food-grade polyethylene. For the latter, such organic crib air mattress manufacturers like Naurepedic use food-grade polyethylene – the same material used for many tarps – as it protects from leaks and doesn’t need a plasticizer like phthalates. Organic wool, in addition, is added to the organic cotton shell for a fire retardant barrier. Ordinarily, poly brominated diphenyl ethers (PBDE’s) would be added for fire retardant properties but, much like phthalates, PBDE’s have been linked with childhood illnesses and brain and growth development issues.
While going “green” is often associated with buying organic foods or fuel-efficient cars to reduce one’s carbon footprint, home products, including a crib air mattress for your baby, are another option for reducing chemicals put into the atmosphere, including the environment of your home. Using organic cotton products, including organic cotton crib air mattresses, eliminates the chemicals used for growing cotton and making it into cloth and the use of other natural or organic products in air mattresses, such as rubber in place of foam, also reduce the amount of harsh, carcinogenic put out into the atmosphere.