Making the Transition from Crib to Toddler Bed

One of the first biggest changes in your baby’s life is going to be the moment you move them from a crib to a toddler bed. Knowing when to make the switch and how to enjoy a peaceful transition is no small task either. If you transition them into a toddler bed too soon, it may be too dangerous, but if you wait too long, you may end up dealing with never-ending cries.

Knowing When to Make the Transition

The first sign that many parents notice is when their child starts trying to escape their crib. If your child is capable of jumping out of their crib, making the transition is a great idea. It’s actually much safer for them to sleep in a toddler bed than the fall from a crib.

Some children may also express their desire to sleep in a big bed. They may want to feel like a big kid and ask you to make the switch. However, in most cases, the transition happens before the child can express this in phrases. The transition period will vary from one child to another, but in most cases, you’ll want to consider it between 1 to 1.5 years of age.  

While some parents do leave their children in cribs until they are 2 and older, this isn’t ideal. The dangers of them jumping out of the crib and banging their head or getting hurt increase significantly once the child is able to stand up and take steps.

Talk About It Positively

Before making the transition, you’ll want to slowly prepare your child for the big move. Take a week or two to mentally prepare your child. Sit down and explain what is going to happen, how it’s a part of growing older and that you will still be right down the hall if they need you.

Avoid overwhelming your child. The last thing you want is for them to go into panic mode. Since most children have very small attention spans, try to keep the talk short. Don’t keep going on and on about how they will be moving into a new bed. Every time you do talk about the upcoming transition, make sure to paint a pretty picture and only mention the positives.

Prepare the Room

Before having your child sleep in their new toddler bed, it’s a good idea to make a few changes. Your child will be free to roam around their room, so make sure any electrical sockets have protectors on them. Avoid lamps with dangling cords or long drags that they can pull on. You’ll also want to secure their dresser to the wall in order to avoid having it tip over on them. Make sure you remove any sharp objects or toys that are not suitable for toddlers. The last thing you want is for your child to be playing with baby powder.

One interesting device to add to the room if you don’t have one already is a video baby monitor. This will allow you to keep an eye on your child and you can even reassure them by letting them know that you can see them at all times. The Motorola Comfort85CONNECT allows you to view your child on the monitor or through your phone using the Hubble for Motorola Monitors app.

Set up the Toddler Bed

First, you’ll want to take down the crib and sell it or set it aside in storage for a future child. Don’t keep the crib set up, just in case your child wants to sleep in it again. It should be clear to your child that this is their bed and there’s no going back to the crib.

Adding a toddler bed rail is a great idea until your child gets used to sleeping in a big bed without falling. A toddler rail usually covers half of the bed’s side, so they are protected from falls during the night, but still have a space to crawl down in the morning.

Set Rules that they can Understand

Finally, once the bed is setup and your child is onboard with sleeping in their own bed, you’ll want to set some basic rules. Make sure the rules are easy enough to understand. For instance, you can tell them that they have to stay in their room until the sun comes up. You can even purchase a toddler clock that lights up at the time of your choosing.

Moving your child from a crib to a toddler bed may not be easy, but before you know it, they will love it and won’t even think twice about the crib they once loved.