As adults we all know how a cheap, lumpy or overused mattress can lead to an uncomfortable and fitful night's sleep. For parents of small children, the quest for a peaceful night's rest can be a most pressing concern but the choice of mattress can so often be overlooked when there are exciting cabin beds, bunks and mid-sleepers to consider. For a growing child, however, it really is crucial that the mattress they sleep on adequately supports their developing spine, as well as providing enough comfort to facilitate that elusive quiet night's slumber. So how do you choose the best mattress for your little one? Here are our top questions to consider: What is the mattress made of? You will probably want to avoid exposing your child to too many chemicals as they sleep so be aware that some mattresses may contain carcinogenic materials, such as polyvinyl chloride. Organic mattresses are growing in popularity and are widely available. Latex and memory foam are hugely popular with adults, however, as they are not fully breathable, we recommend choosing a mattress with a box spring support system for a unrivalled level of support and air circulation for your growing child. Can I buy a second-hand mattress? We would never recommend sleeping your child on a second-hand mattress as they will naturally contain mould spores, bacteria, dust mites and even bodily fluids! Always choose a new mattress to ensure the most hygienic sleeping environment. What size of mattress do I need? Once your baby has grown out of his cotbed, it's a good idea to choose a bed and accompanying mattress that can see him or her through into their teenage years so they don't outgrow it. Most bunk-beds, mid-sleepers and single child beds use full-size single mattresses and you might find this is a sensible option over the long-term. Do I need anything else? In order to protect your child's new mattress, it's a good idea to invest in a good quality mattress protector with waterproof cover. As well as adding an extra comfortable layer of padding, a good protector will also ensure your mattress does not become soiled or damaged when your little one wets the bed or is sick in the middle of the night!