5-minute read UPDATED: November 08, 2022
Your little one is growing – and growing fast – and it’s time to start wrapping your head around the idea of moving your baby into their own room and then swapping out your child’s crib for a “big kid’s bed.” This can be an emotional time for parents and kids alike, so it’s important to be prepared for the transition.
Wondering how to transition your kid from your room, to a crib, to a toddler room? Read on for tips when it's time to move your baby to their own room.
There’s no universal age when kids will be ready to move from a bedside bassinet to a crib in their own room. Each child develops differently. Even from child to child in your own home, you’ll notice the age when they’re ready to transition might vary. This is typically around 6 – 7 months. However, don’t feel bad if your baby isn’t in their own room at that time.
Many experts recommend moving your baby to their own room when they are around 6 or 7 months old. This is generally when a child is sitting up or may be too big for the bassinet. However, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that babies sleep in the same room as their parents for at least 6 months and, ideally, up to 12 months, in order to reduce the risk of SIDS.
If your child is the right age or displaying signs of readiness, it might be time to get them ready for their own room. But how do you get them fully on board with the move? These are some steps that you could take to transition your baby to their own room.
First, speak to your pediatrician to see if they think that your baby is ready to sleep in their own room. Signs of readiness might include sleeping at least 6 hours straight without a feeding, being able to roll from back to front, or outgrowing the weight limit for their bassinet. Some babies will be ready around 6 months old and some will be older, and that’s OK.
It’s important to practice taking naps in the crib so the baby is used to that specific bedroom and mattress. This is the easiest way to transition from sleeping in your room in a controlled way. Be sure to have a baby monitor so you can observe your baby to ensure they are sleeping well in their crib. This makes the transition to nights in the crib much smoother.
Having a consistent sleep schedule with your baby can help make this process easier for them when it comes to their bedtime routine. Your routine might include a bath, a diaper change, putting on pajamas, applying nighttime lotion, reading a book, playing white noise, and singing a song. Setting a repeatable routine that you do during both naps and nighttime helps to put your baby at ease and helps them understand that it is time to sleep. Repeat this routine at naptime as much as possible to help ease your baby into a sleep routine.
Set up a visual or audio/visual baby monitor in your child’s room. Make sure that it is set loud enough so that you can hear them while you are sleeping. If their room is far from where you sleep, you will want to be extra careful that the monitor is plugged in and won’t lose charge overnight. The first few nights can be unnerving, so be prepared to not get too much sleep, especially if you are a worrier.
If your baby has become a toddler, they might be ready to ditch the crib and get a toddler bed. These are some signs a parent should take note of when it’s time to transition their baby into a toddler room.
If your child has verbally asked for a bed instead of a crib, they might be ready. This will be more common in toddlers with an older sibling who already has a bed. This shows that they are mentally deciding they are growing up.
If your child has continuously climbed out of their crib on their own, they should transition into a toddler bed. This eliminates the safety concern of falling when climbing unsupervised. Many cribs are convertible with removable sides for when this time comes.
If the crib no longer fits your child, they’ll need to switch to a toddler bed. If the space is feeling a bit tight, they might need a twin-sized bed instead of a toddler bed, which uses a crib mattress.
Once kids have potty trained overnight, they really need to be able to get out of their beds independently. This way they can get up to use the toilet if needed. If a potty-trained child has to call for their parent and risk the delay to the toilet, it might result in an accident.
Now that your child is moving from a crib to a bed, there are a few additional changes you’ll have to make beyond buying a new bed.
First, until your child gets accustomed to sleeping in a bed, install guardrails on either side of the bed to ensure they won’t fall while they’re sleeping. You can also position the bed so that one side is up against a wall, with the other protected by a guardrail.
Next, since your child will have more freedom to get in and out of bed, install gates at any stairways or rooms you want to keep them from entering during the night. This will keep them safe in case they wander out of bed.
Finally, make sure you also provide an appropriate amount of storage space for their clothing and toys. A cluttered room could pose a danger to your little one, with scattered toys creating a tripping hazard.
There isn’t a specific right or wrong way to do these transitions with your child, it’s ultimately up to you and what’s best for your family. Do your own research around this subject and talk to your pediatrician about your concerns. Check out Rocket HomesSM Homeowner Guide for more tips and information on topics like this one.