Playpen Dangers

Do you think babies need extra bedding or padding when sleeping? Think again. Adding material to playpens puts them at risk for suffocation.

Everybody likes to look at pretty quilts, comforters and pillows. But those items should NEVER be in a playpen.

Since 1988, more than 200 infants and toddlers have suffocated because of soft bedding.

"The only thing that should be in the playpen," said Ann Brown of the Consumer Product Safety Commission , "Is the baby and what came with the playpen."

To raise awareness, the commission has launched the "Sleep Safe, Play Safe" campaign.

"Our goal is to prevent deaths in playpens as well as in cribs." said Brown. "That's why we plan to get the word out about playpen safety to everyone who cares for young children."

Toy maker Mattel has partnered with the commission to produce more than one million posters and brochures with the sleep safe message.

While the campaign's message will primarily use doctors' offices to get the message to parents, the commission's goal is also to reach daycares, babysitters, even grandparents.

The "Sleep Safe" message also reminds parents to put babies to sleep on their back, for comfort and safety. The CSPC said always inspect playpens. Make make sure it is in good condition before putting a child inside.