It is an important decision for both you and your child to make the transition to their own bed. It is a significant milestone in their development. But when is the exact right moment to say goodbye? It is a significant milestone that can be bittersweet, but it is exciting to finally get rid of that crib. While there is no age limit for transitioning babies to toddler beds, there are general age ranges to be on the lookout for. So when should kids start sleeping in a bed?
When Should Kids Start Sleeping in a Bed?
The timing of your child’s transition depends on their physical abilities. You’ll want to move your child to a bed as soon as possible to avoid any potential accidents. Our sleep doctor in NYC has seen that some children are ready to switch at 15 months, while others are more comfortable switching at age 2 or 3. There are many factors that will determine the right time for you and your family. Let’s find out together: When should kids start sleeping in a bed?
The Best Time to Switch Beds
More than 90% of 18-month-olds sleep in a crib. However, this number gradually falls to around 80% by 2 years of age and to 40% by 3. It’s best to remove the mattress completely after your child’s first birthday. A soft rug or carpeting should be laid in the room with a non-slip mat, as falls from this height could cause serious injuries.
If your toddler is acting like she’s planning her first crib escape or if you catch her climbing commando-style above the railing, it might be time to make arrangements for her to get a real bed. This is the best time to make the switch!
How to Keep Your Toddler in Bed
As soon as they learn how to use their legs, toddlers are always getting up and running around. It can be hard to keep them in bed even during the wee hours of the night, making it harder for some kids to adjust. Below, you’ll find some tips that will help you encourage your child’s independence and make sure they (and you) get a restful and safe night.
Make the Transition Exciting
Not sleeping in their own bed should be viewed as a punishment, but rather an achievement. Encourage your child with positive words and talk about how much it will be fun to have a bed like daddy and mommy. Even let them choose their bedding.
Recognize Them for Their Success
Reward your toddler for sleeping in their own bed, whether it’s a sticker, star, or favorite meal. You should encourage them to feel that being in their own bed is something they are worthy of celebrating.
It’s tempting to give in to the fatigue. Sometimes parents will allow their children to stay with them, but they may not be able to get them back to bed at night. Remember that the pain that you are going through now will pay off later.
You can place a folding or mattress next to your child’s bed if they are sick or afraid. This will reinforce to your child that they have their own place for sleeping, and not yours.
Don’t Rush the Process
It is normal for toddlers to experience separation anxiety when starting to sleep alone. Do not expect your child to be able to sleep alone at night. Start small. You might start by sitting in their bed until they fall asleep. Later, you can move to a chair and then let them fall asleep. Even if they can only stay in your bed for a few minutes, you can let them go to sleep in their own room.
Find More Sleep Tips for Kids!
Sleep MD NYC is your premier location for children’s sleep medicine. Transitioning your child into a new bed can be difficult, especially as it changes their entire sleep schedule. But you aren’t alone. You can learn more about the best sleep tips for kids and get treatment for a wide range of pediatric sleep disorders when you get in touch with our specialists today.