Created on: January 31, 2013 Last Updated: April 06, 2013
Transitioning your child into a bed to sleep can vary; for some, it can be sooner than others. There are a few determining factors for the transition process to start. In any case, knowing when the time is right for your child is important to make the transition smooth and happy. Moving onto a big-kid bed is an exciting but daunting time for both the parents and the child. It is one of the first signs that your child is growing up, and for your child that big step can bring a mixed set of emotions with it.
When should you transition your child into a bed?
Time to move on
Your child may simply outgrow his crib which may not be until a later point. If there is no evidence that your child is unsafe or uncomfortable in his crib, then there is no rush. This can simply be down to when you feel the time is right to progress onto a big-kid bed. This can be any time after your child reaches 18 months. You can make the switch when you are ready; and when handled right, it can be a smooth and happy transition. Make this a positive change without hesitation and your child will settle well in his new bed.
Outgrown the crib
As your child becomes mobile, you may find that he needs more space. Additionally, the main determining factor will be when he is able to pull up to standing position. Once he reaches this milestone, it is time to make the switch. This is to ensure his safety, as he may soon start to learn to climb, which could result in an accident. It is better to move your child into a big-kid bed as soon as he becomes mobile, as it won’t be long before he starts pulling up and becoming curious.
Another big decider is when a new arrival is expected. If this is the case, make the transition all about your child and not the new baby. Your child needs to feel that he is moving onto a new bed for all the right reasons, and not feel like he is being replaced. Have him know that the transition to a new big-kid bed is a positive one, and a happy time. Involve him in choosing the bed and covers, and give ample time for him to adjust to the change before the new arrival. Leaving it too late could have its repercussions and make it more difficult. You want your child to be settled well within time.
If you are considering potty training, and your child is showing signs of readiness, you will need to make the transition to a big-kid bed. This is to allow him to be free to go potty when needed, making the potty training easier. However, don’t try to achieve both changes at once, as this may backfire. Too many changes can be too stressful and demanding on a child. Firstly, make the transition to the new big-kid bed and wait until he is settled before introducing potty training. As soon as he shows readiness for potty training, you may want to consider if he is ready for a big-kid bed and make the change as soon as possible.
All children are different, as some are happy and content with sleeping in the crib and show no rush to move on. For others, there may be a few determining factors that may kick-start the move to a big-kid bed. There is no set time, just go with what is right for you and your child. As long as your child is safe and happy, that is all that matters. Make the change to the big-kid bed when the time feels right. In any case, make the transition positive and have patience, as it may take a while for your child to fully settle. The key is to make it a positive move and soon your child will be sleeping soundly in his new bed.
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