Besides the cute factor that a baby mobile adds to any nursery, these often colorful items promote a newborn's development as well.
Different Types of Mobiles
If you're a parent looking for a mobile to hang over your baby's crib, you might find the choices overwhelming. There are hundreds of different kinds of mobiles, in any number of themes, colors and designs. Some mobiles are simple, featuring pastel colors and typical hanging toys, such as bears and bunnies. Others play music and with a click of the on button rotate around carousel-style. Still others may feature lights and other sounds.
How Mobiles Help
Not all babies will react to mobiles the same way. Some will be fascinated by the suspended toys and colors, while others will find other items of interest in their rooms. A mobile can be attached to the side of a crib or changing table. If you find that diaper changes are your baby's least favorite time of day, the distraction of a mobile may help the both of you get through those few moments. Baby mobiles can help a child in the following ways:
- Focus: Because babies who are too young to roll themselves over spend so much time on their backs, a mobile hanging over their cribs will probably hold their interest. Newborns focus best on objects that are about a foot away from their faces, so placing a mobile this distance will allow them to see it well.
- Entertainmnent: Mobiles that turn or have lights will likely hold a baby's interest, for at least a few moments.
- Soothing: A musical mobile can be turned on at bedtime and helps to soothe your baby to sleep.
- Motor skills: As a baby grows and shows more interest in the world around her, she may begin to reach for the mobile she sees every day. The small movements babies make in reaching for items is a big step toward mastering motor skills, both large and small.
Mobile Safety Tips
These safety tips may not be as important when you first bring home your bundle of joy, but as he grows and begins to pull himself up, they'll be useful for your child's safety:
- Make sure baby mobiles are securely attached: It may seem easy enough to set a baby mobile up on the side of a crib, but make sure it's attached firmly. If it falls on top of a baby, it poses strangulation and choking dangers.
- Choose mobiles with short strings: If you buy a brand new baby mobile today, especially in countries that have strict standards for children's toys, chances are that the strings which hold the mobile toys are a sufficiently short length so as not to pose a strangulation hazard. However, if you shop at antique or vintage stores or sites, it's possible that older mobiles contain strings that are too long.
- Check mobiles for loose parts: Gently tug on a mobile's toys to make sure they're attached well. You don't want any objects falling off the mobile and presenting a choking hazard.
In addition, once a child can sit up or pull herself up, it's best to take the mobile out of the crib. Babies are often stronger than you think and may pull themselves up and tug toys off the mobile.
Finding Baby Mobiles
Mobiles for baby come in a wide range of price points. While they're not a nursery necessity, they are a nice touch, particularly if they match the room's theme. This is a short list of online retailers who carry mobiles, but there are many other shops where they can be found. Mobiles make good gift ideas as well.
Just for Baby
With so many different nursery mobiles available today, even the choosiest parents should be able to find one that satisfies them and fits the nursery. Whether it's a more modern version in black, white and red, or full of pastel bears that rotate along with music, a mobile can be a cheerfully decorative touch to your baby's room.