The Case for and Against Bed Rails and Our Top Picks

Elderly Woman with hands on hand rails

Rails are popular in a wide variety of industries. From truck beds to your child’s bed, rails are beneficial for many reasons. However, some find bed rails to be a distraction or an unneeded discomfort in the bedroom. It is essential to consider the pros and cons before installing a mesh security rail to your toddler’s bed. 

What is A Bed Rail? 

Chances are you are very familiar with the concept of bed rails. But, if you are a first-time parent the only rails you may know are those for a truck bed cover. 

Bed rails are sturdy steel metal bars that can be attached to a mattress to provide safe sleeping for a child or adult. Most of the time, a toddler bed rail is covered in a mesh cover to provide comfort, breathability, and durability. Bed rails can also be inflatable, often called a bed bumper. Many manufacturers offer adjustable bed rails to allow ease of access for both the parent and the child. 

Bed rails are also used in hospital beds or in homes/beds for the elderly

The Case Against Bed Rails 

Bed rails can seem like a great solution to sleeping problems for children and adults. But, bed rails aren’t always sunshine and rainbows for those who have to sleep with them. Bed rails can cause feelings of negativity or entrapment. Here are the top reasons against having bed rails. 

Suffocation 

Children and adults can easily get caught between the bed rail and mattress. Your sleeper may be too confused or weak to free themselves from the gap. Being pushed up against the mattress could cause suffocation. There have been many reports of death from suffocation due to bed rails. 

Falling

When it is time to consider bed rails, it is generally for a very young person or an old one. Placing bedrails in their way can cause falls or attempts to climb over the rails. Neither option is great for those who don’t have great balance or the ability to climb. In fact, statistics show that 11 out of every 155-bed rail deaths were related to falling. 

Bruising, Cuts, and Scrapes 

Many experience non-fatal but still hurtful injuries from bed rails. Rubbing against or pushing against a metal bed rail can cause bruises, cuts, and scrapes. Beds should create the ultimate plush luxury comfort needed for sleep, not cause pain. 

Bed rails can cause major injury to those who have them attached to their bed. Limiting mobility and movement can cause major problems when trying to get out of bed in the morning or even use the restroom. It is essential to really analyze the implications of using bed rails for a toddler or adult. 

The Case For Bed Rails

Children transitioning from a crib are used to a bed frame that provides support on all sides. The best bed rails will provide a similar sense of security. This security can also be felt by elderly people at risk of falling in their asleep. Here are some top reasons to add a safety rail for your sleeper. 

Elderly woman gripping rails in bed

Falling 

Falling is on both sides of the argument, and for good reason. Just as much as bed rails could cause a fall from climbing over the rail, not having a rail could cause someone to fall out of bed. The security of a bed rail can help your sleeper and their caregiver have a more peaceful night of sleep. 

Comfort 

The sense that there is an extra layer or “wall” of protection will provide your sleeper comfort. Whether they are in a toddler bed, convertible crib, or king-size mattress there is a safety rail that will provide protection. 

Help 

Many people do not like to feel as if they are a burden or need extra help. Toddlers and the elderly are great examples of this. Feeling incapable of moving around in bed or getting out of bed can cause some dangerous experiments. Having the support of a bed rail can help your sleeper lift themselves up and out of bed on their own. 

The Happy Middle 

While there is no perfect answer for your sleep situation, there are some options that can help you to feel at ease in your decision. 

If you choose not to install bed rails, you can place soft pillows on the floor to help cushion a fall. You can also use a soft mat. The most important factor is to make sure the floor is clear under the sleeper. Falling on a cane, shoes, or Buzz Lightyear toy can cause additional pain or injury.  

As falling was a major aspect of the case for and against bed rails it is important to address. It should be noted that there are many adjustable bed rail options. An adjustable bed rail will allow the sleeper to move the rail to easily access the ground or exit area of the bed. 

Suffocation was another reason against having bed rails. If you choose to get a guard rail, you can still utilize your child’s baby monitor. Watching what they are doing or where they are during their sleep can provide you with peace of mind. If you have an older sleeper, it isn’t a bad idea for them to wear a watch or help monitor too. The elderly can have falls or accidents anywhere. Wearing a necklace or other device that can signal for help will help provide safety for them and peace for you.  

Top Bedrail Picks for Seniors

Transitioning from any sleep space can be difficult. But, products like bed rails should make the process smoother. If you do elect to purchase bed rails here are the top picks to provide security and peace of mind.

EZ Adjust Bed Rail, Adjustable Senior Bed Rail and Bed Assist Grab Bar
$109.00

by Stander 

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02/25/2024 05:00 pm GMT

Stander EZ Adjust Bed Rail  

The Stander Store offers an EZ Adjust Bed Rail. This guard rail will prevent falls as it provides a surface to support and give balance to your Senior loved one. It can support up to 300 pounds. It folds out of the way when not in use or when you are making your bed. The EZ Adjust bed rail offers a safety strap for an added layer of help. It has a locked position to ensure you can stand up with ease. It will fit a traditional or platform bed with slats. The bedrail can fit mattresses between 12 and 16 inches thick as well as sizes Twin to California King. The Stander bed rail also has an organizer pouch so you or your senior can keep important things close. It is perfect for glasses, a book, the remote, or even necessary medications. It is easy to install and all of the needed pieces are included. 

This option is $105 and adjusts in length from 26 to 34 to 42 inches long. It has a black case with an alloy steel frame. It is rated a 4.6 out of 5 stars. This is a great choice to meet your adjustable bed rail needs. 

Medical Adjustable Bed Assist Rail Handle and Hand Guard Grab Bar
$44.99

by Vaunn 

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02/25/2024 05:05 pm GMT

Vaunn Medical Adjustable Bed Assist Rail Handle 

The Vaunn Medical Adjustable Bed Assist Rail Handle and Hand Guard Grab Bar is a great choice for bed safety and stability. It provides mobility independence as there is a secure grip to get you or your senior in and out of bed safely. Anyone with physical limitations or injuries can utilize this rail to get out of bed unassisted. The frame is heavy-duty coated steel to provide a strong base. It can support up to 300 pounds. This option also has a slip-resistant handle with foam padding. The design of the rail allows for an adjustable bed rail height and width. It can fit a twin-sized bed, a double bed, a queen, or a king mattress. It can go on either side of the bed based on your needs. The only con to this option is that it has a height clearance of at least 12 inches from floor to frame. If you have a low-profile bed this is not the best option for you. 

This universal bed rail is $79. It scores 4.6 out of 5 stars by over 5,000 people. It is a great option to help you or your loved one maintain independence while feeling supported. 

Bed Assist Bar with Storage Pocket
$39.99

by Medline 

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02/25/2024 04:48 pm GMT

Medline Bed Assist Bar

The next pick comes from the Medline Store. The Medline Bed Assist Bar with Storage Pocket is a great bed rail choice to help elderly adults get in and out of bed. It has an adjustable height and a mesh pocket for a variety of storage possibilities.  The bed assist rail will fit a twin, full, or queen size bed. This is a perfect choice for those recovering from surgery or with back pain. It can fit most bed heights and slides easily between the mattress and box spring. Many other options will get in the way of your linens but this option will allow for a mattress pad or bed skirt. 

This option is budget-friendly at only $38.24. It has a 4.6 out of 5 stars from over 13,000 reviewers. One reviewer states, “This rail is solid and secure. I loved many of the features. First, my father has an old wooden frame bed with a spring base. We added a plywood board to give it more stability. Since there is no boxspring, many of the models with round tubular metal supports under the mattress would feel lumpy. This model has flat tubing which is not felt through his mattress”. Reviewers are happy with this product and you may be too! 

Bedside Extend-A-Rail | Adjustable Senior Bed Safety Rail
$91.85

by Able Life 

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02/25/2024 04:45 pm GMT

Able Life Bedside Extend-A-Rail 

The Able Life Comfortably Independent Store has the Extend-A-Rail adjustable senior bed safety rail. This selection is great for preventing falls. The rail extends from 20 to 30 inches with a simple push of a button. It offers a standing support handle to help those up to 300 pounds. It can be used with a wide variety of bed frames and sizes. The Able Life rail works best with mattresses between 8 and 15 inches thick. It was not created for adjustable beds or beds with soft mattresses. 

This item is rated 4.5 out of 5 stars. It is on sale for $99 but is regularly $119. The Able Life Bedside rail is a simple option that can provide extra support for Seniors. 

MGrip Adjustable Contoured Bed Rail with Multiple Gripping Positions
$34.99

by MedPro 

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02/25/2024 04:41 pm GMT

MedPro MGrip Adjustable Contoured Bed Rail 

The MGrip Bedrail from the MedPro Store is a bit different from the other options. Its contoured frame is designed to allow multiple ergonomic grip positions. This helps you or your loved one to stay safe regardless of the position they are in. This bed rail is also compact, lightweight, and perfect for travel. The portable bed rail is easy to assemble so you can take it almost anywhere. The MGrip bed rail has special foam to help you reposition or get out of bed. It has two height settings and crossbars to prevent entanglement or entrapment. It also has an adjustable strap with steel buckles to fit any mattress. 

This is the top-rated item of our picks at a 4.7 out of 5 stars. It is also on the lower end of the budget range at $56. The MGrip guard rail is an excellent bed rail choice to help your Senior stay independently mobile. 

Top Bedrail Picks for Toddlers 

Obviously, toddlers have different bed rail needs than Seniors do. It is important to identify a few key differences to make sure you are meeting the needs of your specific party. Toddlers may not need as much support getting in and out of the bed as they will remaining in it. A big kid bed is a special transition for your little one. Consider the best mattress and bed size to fit your child’s needs. Whether you use a toddler bed rail on a twin-size bed or get them a full bed, there is a bed rail to meet your needs. Check out a variety of the best toddler rail options below.  

Sleep Toddler Bed Rail
$59.99

by Munchkin 

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02/25/2024 04:34 pm GMT

Munchkin Safety Toddler Bed Rail 

This lightweight bed frame option is extendable and padded. The Munchkin Safety Toddler Bed Rail measures 18” tall and extends up to 36 inches wide. It has a locking mechanism and hinged design to support the needs of you and your child. It is easy to use and makes sheet changes or making the bed easy. This is a great option for parents as there is no assembly required. 

This selection is rated 4.4 out of 5 stars. It is $44.99 to make you and your wallet happy. 

Toddler Bed Rail Bumpers 

If you don’t feel you need full bed rails for your toddler, the Toddler Bed Rail Bumpers are a great option. This selection comes in a pack of two bumpers that are made of memory foam. It provides a soft space for your child while also preventing them from falling off the bed. It can be placed under a fitted sheet for easy installation. This option will fit any type of bed or mattress. The company also offers a 30-day refund if you decide this choice is not working for your family. 

The Toddler Bed Rail Bumpers are rated a 4.7 out of 5 stars. There are extremely versatile and only $47.95.

Toddler standing in crib gripping bed rails
[2-Pack] Inflatable Bed Rail for Toddlers
$49.92

by hiccapop

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02/25/2024 04:33 pm GMT

Hiccapop Inflatable Bed Rail 

This option is perfect for travelers! The Hiccapop Inflatable bed rail works at home or on the go. It comes with a travel vase to protect your product and provide easy portability. The inflatable bed rail uses your child’s weight to keep them in place. It will inflate quickly and provide a full and tight bumper under your fitted sheet. It will also fit any size of the bed. This is a great option for sleepovers at grandma’s or in a hotel. 

This bed rail comes in a two-pack for $49.92. It is rated 4.4 out of 5 stars for your ultimate satisfaction.  

Summing It Up 

Making a decision to use a bed rail for your child or senior loved one can be difficult. There are many sleep dangers that exist on both sides of the topic. But, being aware of the dangers can help you to avoid them should you choose to utilize bed rails. Adults and children alike want to feel both protected and independent. Bed rails can provide a great opportunity to help your loved ones feel mobile while also keeping them protected. Falls and suffocation are serious issues when it comes to bed rails. But, each of the products listed has safety features that will hopefully keep tragedy away. Families need to be able to sleep soundly regardless of their situation. Each individual needs quality sleep to perform at their best and for their well-being. Products such as bedrails can provide a means to great sleep and security for all.  

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