Staying close to your baby and watching your little one sleep as snug as a bug is a precious moment. Every parent love to cuddle with their kid and have him (her) close to them.
Though change might be challenging for both you and your little one, some of them are imperative. One of them is the transition of your baby from the bassinet to the crib.
Don’t be scared! We have got your back.
Here, in this article, we will walk you through the different aspects of transitioning your baby to a crib.
When can you shift your baby from a bassinet to a crib?
When your baby starts to outgrow his (her) cozy bassinet, it is time for you to take the next step. Wondering what it is? Yes, it is time for your little one to move to the crib.
You can understand the time for the transition when your baby no longer finds his (her) bassinet comfy. Your child might wake up in the middle of the night as s/he bumped their tiny head.
Ideally, it is best to move your baby from a bassinet to a crib when your child is between three to six months.
However, if your little one does not find any issues sleeping in the bassinet, you don’t have to rush. Nevertheless, it is best not to delay it after six months.
When you continue to have your baby in the bassinet after your child is six months old, it might be challenging for you to make a shift. So, it is beneficial to start the transition gradually. Through this, you won’t have to struggle a lot with the process later on.
Since transitioning a baby to a crib might take time, you should be prepared for the process beforehand.
The time needed for transitioning to a crib will also depend on your baby. As each child is unique in their ways, no one can predict when your kid will start finding the crib comfortable.
If your little one is an easy adaptor or a super sleeper, then you don’t have to worry. Your baby will accommodate the new changes within no time.
If your child is a slow adaptor or a little night owl, you might have to spend quite some time assisting your child in adjusting to the new space. As mentioned, it is subjective and will also depend on the steps you adopt.
When not to transition your baby to a crib
Since your little one is adjusting to his (her) surroundings, a sudden change might be confusing. However, some kids would accommodate them without any problems.
So, you have to consider your baby’s requirements subjectively and give time for the process. Along with that, it is best to avoid transitioning to a crib under some conditions. They include:
- When you plan to go on a family vacation, it is best to avoid shifting your child to a crib. Here, your child has to undergo too many changes at the same time. It might be challenging for your baby.
- Similarly, if you intend to move to another house, it is best to hold the transition until you reach the new place. It can also be a difficult task for your little one to handle.
- When there is a change in your child’s caregiver, your child might find handling both these shifts together as challenging.
- When you plan to switch your child’s routine due to some specific reason, it might confuse your little one.
Under these circumstances, you should consider transitioning your baby to the crib after their completion. It will help your little one adjust to the situation. It can also reduce the problems you might face during the process.
Where to place the crib -nursery or master bedroom?
When you transition your baby to a crib, you can either place the crib in your master bedroom or a nursery. However, it is your call. Let’s have a look at both these options.
Having your baby at an arm’s reach during the nighttime can be comforting and relieving for new parents. Apart from that, the American Academy of Pediatrics suggests that it is beneficial for the child to be in their parents’ room at least s/he is six months. They also add that parents can have their child in a crib close to their bed till s/he turns one.
One of the primary reasons why the American Academy of Pediatrics supports this is that it reduces the risk of SIDs. SIDs mostly happen when the child is below the age of one. When parents can have their child close to them, it can lower the chance of confronting such problems.
Room sharing can also be beneficial when it comes to breastfeeding your child. You can reach out to your little one when s/he feels hungry. But there is a downside to it. If your child stays back in your room, it could tamper with their sleep cycle and routine.
However, it is beneficial for your child to wake up at night. Studies show that it can assist in protecting your baby from SIDs. Nevertheless, staying up late or reverse cycling can have an impact on both parents and the baby. You can overcome such issues by creating a good sleeping routine.
When it comes to nurseries, studies depict that children tend to sleep well when they are alone. There won’t be any disturbances or noises to distract them when they are in their nursery. When your child sleeps in your room, there could be some form of distraction.
As per research, when a baby sleeps well during infancy, it can improve their sleep quality in childhood too. So, by providing a comfy sleeping environment in your master bedroom or nursery, you are taking a step towards your child’s welfare. As your baby grows, a crib is the best place to provide your child with comfort. So, transitioning your baby from a bassinet to a crib is one of the measures you can take in improving their sleep quality.
Things to consider before you move your little one to a crib
Before undertaking the step of transitioning your kid to a crib, you have to consider a few things. These measures can ensure that your child sleeps safely and comfortably.
Now, let’s have a look at a few things that can provide your little one a good night’s sleep.
Having a safe and spacious crib
When you purchase or build a crib for your baby, it is best to opt for one that has enough room. Since you are moving your child from a bassinet, mainly because of lack of space, you have to consider this factor while choosing a crib.
Along with that, ensure that your baby’s crib complies with the safety guidelines. It is best to have a crib with 50 cm long sides. Through this, you can avoid the chances of your child climbing out of it. Having vertical bars can also reduce this possibility.
Opt for a snug fit mattress
When the bed is soft and has gaps, your child might find it hard to sleep. It can also be dangerous for your baby. It can result in the intake of carbon dioxide, which would cause suffocation. Along with that, soft beds can alter the shape of your baby’s head.
So, it is best to opt for a bed that is thicker than eight centimeters. Through this, your child can sleep comfortably with firm support. Try to avoid any form of soft bedding you might want to place on the crib too.
Apart from that, the American Association of Pediatrics state that parents have to ensure that their child sleeps in a supine position. It means that your child has to sleep on his (her) back.
You have to make sure that the mattress is clean and hygienic. Cleaning the sheets and the bed from time to time can also help enhance your child’s well-being.
Remove pillows and other things from the crib
When your child is sleeping on the crib, some parents tend to place pillows and other soft objects. But it is best to avoid them. It can affect their breathing and also cause a risk of accidental suffocation. It is best to remove all kinds of sleep positioning objects, beddings, bumpers from your baby’s crib.
Apart from that, you should not cover your baby with a blanket while sleeping. You have to use a fitted sheet cover on the bed as well. By taking these steps, you can ensure your child’s safety while s/he sleeps on a crib. However, you can always place your little one in a sleep sack for comfort.
Provide optimal conditions
Along with the crib, you have to ensure that you have baby-proofed the room. It is best to choose a room that has proper ventilation. Through this, you can make sure there is air circulation in the room. It is also beneficial to have natural light and optimal room temperature.
Having a neat room is yet another factor. You can clean the room from time to time. By furnishing the optimal conditions in the room, you can enhance your child’s sleep quality.
These are a few things you have to consider before you transfer your baby to a crib. When you create a safe and comfortable environment for your little one, your baby could sleep without any issues.
How to transition your baby to a crib?
Each baby will require a different amount of time to settle down on a crib. You don’t have to be in a hurry. Even though it sounds scary, by following the correct steps, transitioning would not be a hassle.
Take small steps
There are different ways to start the process. However, it is imperative to take small and gradual steps. A quick transition may not be easy. If your baby’s crib is in the nursery, place it in a comfy spot.
You can start by using the crib for your baby’s first nap of the day. You can then gradually increase the number of naps your kid takes on the crib. However, you have to help your child fall asleep by following your usual method.
Through this, your baby will start adjusting to the new environment. You can also place the crib in your room. Here, you can follow the same steps. It is all about easing into the transition.
Once your child finds the crib comfortable, you can then take the big step of letting your baby sleep in the crib for the night.
Create a sleeping schedule
Preparing a bedtime routine can be highly beneficial. It is an excellent way to add predictability to your baby. For instance, you can give your little one a bath and massage. You can then feed him (her) and sing lullabies or read stories.
Once you form a routine like this, it will be easy for your child to move into the transition process. Your child will find it comforting and relaxing too.
Stay close for a while
Once your child starts sleeping on the crib, s/he might be afraid in the initial stages. Sitting next to the crib for the first few days will be beneficial.
Gradually, you can increase the distance. You can use a lap to crib transfer while shifting to the crib too. By doing so, you can assist your child to feel safe and sleep peacefully.
Monitor your kid for extra safety
As a parent, it can be challenging to let your baby sleep alone. You can place a baby or video monitor in the room. Through this, you can watch your kid while s/he sleeps. You can also check on them if you find your child crying or facing any other difficulties.
Transitioning might be challenging. But it is an essential step in everyone’s life. So, when it is the right time, you have to assist your child in moving to a crib. Though change can be difficult, remember that it is for the best.