There is a truly impressive array of baby play yards on the market today. Play yards are the modern answer to yesterday's playpens, and as such, many are designed for more than mere playing. Available in myriad styles with focuses on a number of convenient uses, a good quality play yard can be a great investment for those considering the purchase of nursery furniture.
Ranging in styles and functionality, these yards can also serve as portable cribs, changing tables or gates, and provide babies with a safe place for napping or amusing themselves while their parents are busy. There are floorless "corral" styles, which can double as safety gates, inflatable models, plastic, wood wire and mesh styles, as well as combinations such as play yard / bassinets / equipped with a number of useful features. Most are designed for easy portability, with casters or wheels, and capable of folding or collapsing compactly when not in use, making them ideal for travel.
Parents should give serious consideration as to how they will use a play yard and select the appropriate one themselves. As baby safety yards can be a popular shower gift, consider which features will be most suitable for your needs and select a model for your gift registry list that will provide for them. Choosing colors and styles to fit your nursery or home décor can also be important. Many companies offer styles that coordinate with other baby furniture, such as high chairs, swings and full-sized cribs. If it is something, you will have to look at for any length of time, opting for a pleasant appearance can make a big difference in the tranquility of your surroundings.
The most important consideration is for child safety. Design improvements in recent years have accounted for the prevention of a large number of injuries and deaths that used to occur due to lower and fewer safety standards. It is a good practice to purchase a play yard with the latest release date. Do not buy used baby yards, or old model hand-me-downs, as models that are even more recent may have been the subject of product recalls of which you can be unaware. It is generally safe to use a play yard from a previous baby, if the children are close in age and the product was never recalled. It should be inspected to ensure that it is in good, usable condition, with no damage to mesh sides or railings.
Be sure that any model you select has a certification from the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association. A sticker from JPMA indicates that it has met the current voluntary standards for baby play yards set by the American Society for Testing and Materials.
Most major manufacturers of baby furniture make good quality play yards. A little investigation as to what is available and which models meets your criteria for safety, function and looks can be a reward investment in time. Baby play yards can be an important part of your child's early life and are well worth any trouble it takes to ensure you get one that meets your needs.