Is it time for your child to move into a ‘big kid’ bed? Follow our top tips for an easier adjustment for the whole family.
Your precious baby is growing every day. From newborn to infant to toddler – things develop at a rapid pace and before you know it, your little one is not so little anymore. Soon enough, they may outgrow their crib and be ready to transition into a ‘big kid’ bed. Here we share some advice to help you prepare for the big move.
1. Know when the time is right.
Most toddlers are ready to transition into a bed between the ages of 2 to 4. However, every child is different, and you would need to assess your own child before making this important decision.
Signs that your toddler may be ready to move into a bed include:
- Your child climbs out of their crib at night;
- They seem to have outgrown the crib and may require a bigger sleeping area;
- They have shown an interest or have asked to move into a bed.
2. Know your options
Which bed is best for a toddler transition? You may be surprised to learn that you have a few options to consider.
- The toddler bed or convertible. Modern cribs are available in a convertible style which you can shift from crib to toddler bed as your child grows. You could also purchase a freestanding toddler bed as an option for your little one. This is often smaller than a single bed but bigger than a crib, making it a great transition bed for little people.
- A single bed. If you’re looking for a solution that will carry your little one from their toddler years into early adolescence, then a quality single bed may be a great option. Be sure to assess the safety of your single bed, however. You may want to invest in safety rails to avoid any potential tumbles during the night.
- A mattress. A simple mattress is often an easy transition solution. Simply place the mattress directly on the floor and avoid the chance of your little one falling from a higher sleeping area altogether.
3. Get your little one involved.
Talk to your child about this new and exciting transition. Carefully explain to them what will happen and what you expect from them. You can also give them the opportunity to get involved in the process. You can do this by allowing your toddler to pick out their own bedding or have a say in the color, shape or size of their new bed. This may add to their newfound sense of independence and give your little one greater ownership over the big move.
4. Create a safe, secure space.
Your little one may be well adjusted to life in a crib where they feel secure, familiar and at ease each night. Recreate this sense of security by ensuring that their new bed is a safe, calming space that they can enjoy. You can do this by placing their new bed in the same position where their crib once stood. You can also add their favorite blanket or cuddly toy so that they feel safe and at peace in their new space. This will help to keep things consistent and may ensure that they settle easier at night.
5. Stick to routine.
Your child’s transition into a bed may come as a huge change in their young lives. Do not add to the confusion by altering your family’s regular bedtime routines. Be patient during the transition phase as your toddler may take some time to adjust to the new setting. They may feel the need to get out of bed more regularly – perhaps for a cuddle, a drink of water or a goodnight kiss. However, it is your job to reinforce the bedtime routine. Be consistent as you encourage your child to go back to bed and settle down for the night.
Most importantly, remember to stay positive and encourage your child during this important transition. It may require a time of adjustment for the whole family, but soon enough, your little one may be happy and flourishing in their new bed.