Best Nap Mats For Toddlers Of 2017
Toddlers simply need more rest to recuperate than adults. On average, toddlers sleep 14 hours per day, and it’s crucial that the nap mat you select is both comfortable and safe for your child. The best nap mats for toddlers are easy to store, clean and carry. However, choosing a nap mat is not an easy job.
Why You Need a Toddler Nap Mat?
Most child centers around the world provide time for the toddler to nap at least once during the day. As soon as toddlers start transitioning out of their cribs, they sleep on a mat provided by the daycare center. However, most institutions – at least in the United States – require the parents to at least provide a blanket and a sheet.
Moreover, the mat provided by the daycare center will probably be thinner than your regular crib mattress, so a standard crib-sheet probably won’t fit around it. In fact, trying to find bedding that will fit these types of mats is not an easy job. Besides, bringing separate bedding, sheet, and pillow to daycare every day can be awkward, not to mention tiresome.
As your child gets older, they will be responsible for putting the bedding on the nap mat. Also, some daycare centers don’t even have cushioned mats, so children are forced to lie on their blankets.
If you want to make your child’s life much easier, you should find something compact and easy-to-use. The nap mats make children more comfortable and their naps more enjoyable.
How to Transition from a Crib to a Nap Mat?
During the first year, you’re in complete control of your child’s sleep environment. Your child is probably accustomed to sleeping in a quiet, dark room.
But now, things are completely different. Once your child starts transitioning to daycare, they will be required to lie and take a nap on the floor among other children.
Understandably, most parents get worried about how their children will handle this environment. But you have to be aware that this change doesn’t have to be that challenging.
In addition to looking into the best nap mats for toddlers, you should speak to personnel at the daycare. Learn more about the environment, and see what the best way to prepare your child is.
For starters, you need to find out are there any regulations for nap mats in your state. This will help you immensely when you’re looking for the best mat for your child’s needs.
For example, some daycares require that the mat needs to be at least two inches thick. Furthermore, you should have a conversation with your child and try to explain the new environment, so they know what to expect.
How to Choose the Best Nap Mat
When you’re looking through all of these nap mats, there are some crucial things you should consider and pay special attention to:
Size of the mat
As we mentioned before, there are some rules and regulations in certain daycares. For instance, many daycare centers across the US allow only two-inch-thick mats. So you have to check this out at your local daycare before making any decisions.
When making the purchase, be sure to check the actual thickness. You don’t want to end up with a one-inch mat, where the covers make for the extra inch.
Material it’s made of
If you’ve ever read any user-reviews for mats online, you’ve probably noticed that most complain about the quality of the material. In some situations, the material is too “stretchy” in others it’s too hard for the child.
That’s why you should look for mats inner-linings made of cotton. Moreover, you should see if the nap mat makes any noise. A nosy mat will only make your child uncomfortable during nap time.
Only the best nap mats for toddlers on the market come with removable pillows. Most of the ones we reviewed here come with one too.
This is pretty practical for a number of reasons. You don’t have to spend the extra money on a new pillow, and it will make the washing process a lot simpler since the pillow won’t lose its contour.
A blanket will allow your toddler to wrap themselves during the winter, remain warm and fall to sleep. An attached blanket will also help you keep everything together because your child won’t lose it.
Of course, this will minimize your costs, since you won’t have to shop for a separate blanket. But you have to check to see can you easily wash the blanket before you buy the nap mat.
Top Five Nap Mats for Toddlers
Angeles Germ-free Nap Map
The first mat we have on here is recommended by a good number of daycares and kindergartens across the United States.
Also, it’s qualified for the so-called “Greenguard Gold” certification that protects the children from dangerous products in schools. We’ve established that’s Angeles nap mat is safe, but you’re probably wondering – is it comfortable?
All you need to know is that one of the biggest selling points of this mat is its thickness. To answer your question: Yes, it’s more than comfortable.
While most mats flatten after some time and become less comfortable over time, this particular mat is two inches thick, comfortable and durable. You won’t even have to worry about it if your child pats the mat on a hard, wooden floor.
If safety and durability are your main concerns, this is one of the best nap mats for toddlers around. Although the lack of colorful characters might be a problem to some kids, you can always brighten things up by adding a few stickers.
My First Memory Foam Nap Mat
This manufacturer managed to make a comfortable mat with this product. This nap mat was designed with daycare centers in mind. It even comes with a useful name-tag, which will allow you to personalize the map for your child.
And when it comes to comfort, don’t worry, the good folks from My First Memory have you covered. The mat is made of memory foam, which adapts to your child’s body and allows them to relax completely.
It comes with a removable cover that you can simply wash in your washing machine, just don’t wash the cushioning.
The pillow will give great head support and ensure that your toddler gets plenty of rest. All in all, this is a fairly simple mat, but for the price, you’ll get everything you’re looking for in a great nap mat.
Wildkin Big Dots Aqua Original Nap Mat
Looking at user-reviews and comments across the internet, you’ll see that this Wildkin mat has been described as the perfect preschool mat by a number of parents out there. It has great padding on the bottom that makes sleep on the floor more comfortable.
Furthermore, it comes with both a removable pillow and cover that give your toddler some additional comfort. You can roll it up easily, secure the mat with Velcro straps and store without too much effort.
It also has useful carry-straps that allow you to carry the mat when you’re dropping your child off. One of the features that put this Wildkin model on the list of best nap mats for toddlers is the design.
There are more than 20 different, colorful designs – some which include dinosaurs, superheroes, princesses and many, many more – so it’s perfect for both boys and girls. If you have some extra money, you can buy a matching backpack or a lunchbox for your toddler as well.
Olive Kids Train, Planes and Trucks Nap Mat
Once again, we have a fairly simple product on our list; however, what separates this from the others is the perfect balance of comfort and cuteness.
Toddlers are usually obsessed with planes, trains, and cars. This particular nap mat has all of them and has great, vibrant colors; your child will surely fall in love with.
And when it comes comfort, wait till you hear this. The Olive Kids Nap Mat has additional padding underneath the pillow and mat.
Mat’s pillow, of course, is removable, so you can wash the whole mat in the washing machine without worrying about anything. Last but not least, the blanket is noticeably large, so your child will be able to wrap themselves completely and remain warm during the winter.
Ozark Mountain Kids Nap Mat
Ozark Mountain Nap Mat may not be the most well-known product on our list. However, we placed it among the best nap mats for toddlers for a couple of reasons. Naturally, it meets the two-inch criteria, has a good number of designs and is just as endurable as most Disney nap mats on the market.
And that’s not all – the mat is blown in a polyester fill. Therefore, it has small air-chambers that provide additional comfort to your child. Just like most mats on here, it has sewn in pillow and blanket.
One of the biggest problems thick mats have is that after the first wash, they lose their shape – you won’t have this problem with Ozark Mountain Nap Mat. And it’s not good for toddlers – it’s suitable for exceptionally tall children, so if you have an average-sized toddler, you’ll get a lot of mileage out of it.
Additionally, it can be rolled-up into a backpack for your child to carry. This may not be too important for you – but it’s also available in adult sizes. If you need a mat for workouts, you can get the adult version.
The Bottom Line
Those are some of the best nap mats for toddlers out there. Before you make the final choice, you should go back, reread our reviews and see which one of them will suit your child’s needs best. You won’t make a mistake with any one of them, but every one of them is different, so be sure to reassess everything before you make the pick.
To prepare your child for the new routine, you should set up the mat in your child’s room. This way, your child will be able to adjust more quickly to the new nap.
Also, it would be smart to make the mat seem like something special just for your child. Encourage your toddler to use it during the nap time, but be careful not to force it on him or her.
After a week or two, your child will probably start feeling comfortable. In turn, this will make the transition much easier. As The Bump reports, a special nap mat will give a child comfort they need to start napping normally.
In the end, by selecting the right nap mate, you’ll give your child an open spot that provides them with the much-needed sleep for long-term development.