This post is sponsored by Baby Tula and Presley Couture. You can find and read my disclosure policy here.
When should I transition my baby to a crib? This question seems to be on the minds of every new parent, but the answer isn’t as simple as when they turn X months old or when they sleep through the night. Babies have different temperaments and developmental levels, so there is no perfect time to transition your child from co-sleeping to sleeping in their bed. Still, it does become necessary at some point to ensure that both you and your baby are getting enough sleep.
When to move baby from bassinet to crib?
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that your baby should remain in your room for at least his first six months. Of course, that timeline may get moved up if a baby has outgrown its bassinet. It’s also recommended that you breastfeed exclusively during these first six months and place your baby on his back for sleeping throughout both night and day. It would be best if you also looked for the following signs. If your baby is doing any of the following, then that means they are ready for a crib:
- Rolling over and shifting positions
- Your baby’s weight has exceeded the weight limit of their basinet
How to transition your child to a crib?
Start by allowing your baby to take their daytime naps in their crib. This will enable them to get more familiar with their new bed and the new surroundings if it’s in their room. Let your baby have some playtime, such as tummy time in their crib, so that they can be alert and aware of the new crib. If you have used specific swaddle blankets in the bassinet, be sure to use them while rocking him to sleep to make him feel comfortable. Lastly, be sure to keep a routine. Make bedtime the same time every night. Be sure to include bath time and reading time so that it alerts the baby of what time it is and gets him plenty of time to unwind and settle down for a peaceful night’s rest.
Things to consider when making the switch.
Most babies will wake up in a panic for a couple of weeks until they are used to their new digs. Keep a nightlight on so that when your baby wakes up, he can remember his surroundings. Be sure to purchase a firm mattress with a fitted sheet. Never use a loose blanket to keep the baby covered, as this can cause suffocation if the baby moves too much. Instead, place baby in a sleep sack to keep him warm during cool nights that will allow him to wiggle and move without danger. During summertime, dress her lightly in these cute rompers for babies so that she can sleep comfortably. You should never use bumpers or mobiles in a crib as these items can also pose a risk to baby. Studies have found that babies can suffocate if they can’t roll away from their crib bumper. Mobile is also risky if it falls in the crib and baby becomes tangled in it. Be sure to have a good quality baby monitor and that it’s always on and fully charged whenever baby is in his crib alone. This will also allow you to keep an eye on baby while he fidgets and fusses. Teaching baby how to self-soothe is the key to a good night’s rest, but you don’t have to let baby cry for long. You can allow him to cry for five minutes before you console him. He will eventually get the hang of it.
The most important thing is that you keep an eye on your child and assess whether they are comforted by being held, whether they can soothe themselves, and how often you need to nurse them at night. This will allow you to determine when it’s time for a transition. As with anything else, give yourself and your baby a lot of grace and patience. It may not work out the first, second, or even third time, so be sure to take breaks when you need them and stop when it gets too stressful. You can try again whenever you are ready.