Your baby has passed the milestones of rolling over, crawling, and moving from a bassinet to a crib. You’ve been excited for every new skill and step, but it’s also bittersweet to think of your little one growing up so fast, and moving to a toddler bed from a crib won’t be any different. While the timing of this transition is unique to every family, every parent will want to ensure this new adventure is safe and secure for their little one. That’s why we’ve put together a list of 7 tips for making the move from crib to toddler bed.
When is it safe for your child to sleep in a toddler bed?
Before we dive into some suggestions to make this transition easier on your family, we want to share when you should be doing it. Many families choose the right timing for them, and it ranges from 18 months to 3.5 years. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines, the ideal time is around age 3 and when they reach 35 inches in height. Like we previously mentioned, this is a decision that only you can make for your family!
1. Pick the Right Size Bed
There are plenty of convertible cribs that will turn into a toddler bed, but if you got a crib second hand or decided not to go that route, you’re in the market for something new for their nursery. While it may be tempting to get a twin bed that will last a lot longer than the toddler years, it’s actually safer for your little one to be in a bed designed for a toddler.
These beds typically are lower to the ground and the mattress is smaller, making it easy for tots to get in and out of bed without hurting themselves. Most toddler beds are designed to be used with a crib mattress, so if yours is still in good condition, you won’t have to replace it!
2. Get a Toddler Bed
With Safety Rails Everyone knows that toddlers are still getting their footing (sometimes literally!). When you’re thinking about moving from a crib to toddler bed, you should consider how easy it is for them to fall. That’s why you want to get a bed that has safety rails. If you have a convertible crib, you may need to look at the manufacturer’s website and get the compatible safety rails.
3. Double Check the Hardware
Parents want their babies to be safe, so don’t miss out on a safety check! When you put the new bed together, be sure to do a once over on the hardware and make sure everything is nice and snug.
4. Put the Bed in a Safe Spot
Another safety tip you should follow when transitioning from crib to toddler bed is placing their new bed in a safe place. As a baby, you didn’t have to think about what was around the crib, but with toddlers, you have to think about potential hazards that could be dangerous. Don’t put the bed near a window with blind cords. Consider moving the bed away from walls and furniture so they won’t become trapped.
5. Get Your Child Excited
You won’t just have to consider the logistics and safety concerns when it comes to this transition. You’ll also need to think about your child and how they will react to such a big shift. The best course of action is to talk up their “big kid bed” and how exciting it is. Let them get involved with choosing kid friendly bedding items, read books about moving from a crib to a bed, and talk about how exciting the change can be with them.
6. Don’t Change Your Bedtime Routine
Change is hard on anyone, especially for little humans who go through drastic changes during toddlerhood. That’s why when making a change like moving from a crib to a toddler bed, you shouldn’t change anything else (if you can help it). Keeping their bedtime routine the same should be a huge comfort to them, and they already have it down pat!
7. Childproof the Room
A huge aspect of this change you should consider is childproofing. Since your child will have a bed where they can get out and play in their room, you’ll want to make sure it is as safe as it can be for them. Cover up outlets, put up a child gate in front of the door, place locks on cabinets and drawers, remove choking hazards, and anything else you can think of.
Transitioning from a crib to toddler bed can be hard for the whole family, but we hope with these tips, the move is easier than you anticipated! Are you trying to get your kiddo excited for their new bed? Help them make it fun with a personalized name blanket that will keep them cozy and comforted through the process!