Are you wondering whether now is the right time to move your toddler from a crib to a big bed? While there’s definitely no strict timeline on when the transition should take place, around 18 months of age is typically when parents start to consider making the change.
The trouble is, if you try to transition your little one from a crib into a big bed too early, it’s going to lead to weeks, if not months of sleep troubles. However, the good news is, there are signs you can look out for to see when your toddler is ready for the switch.
Here, you’ll discover the top signs to watch out for that your toddler is ready to switch to a big bed.
They Ask For Their Own Bed
Of course, the easiest way to tell whether your toddler is ready for a big bed is if they actually tell you they are. It could be they want to sleep in a big bed like you do, or if they have older siblings, they may want to copy them. Whatever the reason, there does often come a time when toddlers do start to express their desire to sleep in a big bed.
The difficulty here is that just because your toddler thinks they are ready, it doesn’t necessarily mean the transition will go well. Once you’ve taken away the crib, they may feel overwhelmed by the change. So, it can be a bit of a gamble, but generally speaking, if your little one does express an interest in sleeping in a big bed, it’s best to listen and consider whether they are actually ready or not.
You’re Comfortable Leaving Them Unsupervised
Once you do make the transition, there’s going to be no bars to keep your toddler in bed. This newfound freedom can be both exciting and daunting for a toddler. Initially they’ll likely be really excited to go to sleep in their new big bed. However, keeping them in bed can prove to be a real challenge!
Of course, you can always install a safety gate to stop them from leaving the room. However, they will still be left unsupervised whether that’s in their bedroom or the whole house if safety gates aren’t installed. So, you need to ask yourself whether you’re comfortable, even with all of the childproofing you’ve done, to leave them unsupervised if they do get up before you do.
They Constantly Attempt Or Manage To Climb Out Of The Crib
The main sign your toddler is ready to move from a crib to a bed is they can easily climb out of it. This is a real safety concern, so unless you can lower the mattress to prevent them from being able to get out of the crib, you’ll want to transition them into a big bed.
If you don’t make the transition and your toddler can climb out of the crib, they could end up seriously hurting themselves. Even if they’ve managed to successfully get out of the crib numerous times without incident, that isn’t to say they won’t have an accident one time while doing it. They could get caught on the bars, trip and bang their head or fall off the top of the crib completely. So, it’s much safer to make the transition once your toddler reaches this stage.
These are the main signs to look out for that your toddler is ready to transition into a big bed. It’s worth keeping in mind that each toddler develops at their own pace so there is no real age they should be sleeping in a bed. However, most parents find it easier to make the transition once their toddler is around 3 years of age.
Considering Transitioning Because You Need The Crib Empty
One common reason parents consider transitioning their toddler from a crib to a bed is because they’re expecting another baby. It’s logical to try and free up the cot if a new arrival is on the way. However, it’s also not recommended unless your toddler has been showing clear signs that they’re ready to make the change.
The trouble is, as mentioned earlier, transitioning too early can lead to all kinds of issues. You’re going to have enough to deal with once baby arrives, without the additional sleep issues you’ll face with your toddler too. So, rather than putting your toddler into a big bed and letting baby have the crib, it could be worth borrowing or buying an additional crib instead. This may seem like an unnecessary expense but it’s actually going to prove vital for your sanity!
Overall, making the transition from crib to bed can be pretty traumatic for you and your toddler if it isn’t done at the right time. Always look for the signs your toddler is ready to make the switch.
When did you know your toddler was ready to switch to a big bed? Share your story below!