There is really no right time to move your toddler out of their cot and into a bed, it really comes down to the individual needs of your child and family, however many toddlers make the move to a big bed between the ages of 2 – 3 1/2.
When should I transfer my toddler from a cot to a bed?
Often the decision to move your toddler out of their cot and into a big bed is due to necessity if a new baby is coming along. If this is the case, it’s a good idea to have your toddler transitioned a couple of months before their new siblings arrival to ensure their bedtime routine is settled before the new baby arrives. Otherwise, some signs that your child may be ready to move to a bed include:
* Climbing out of their cot.
* They are toilet training and it will be easier for them to take themselves to the toilet overnight if they are in a bed.
Alternatively you may simply decide that it’s the right time for your child to transition to a bed.
How can I help my toddler transition from a cot to a bed?
If you can, it’s a great idea to talk to your toddler in the weeks leading up to the move and even involve them in the decision of when to make the big switch. Some other tips include:
* Look for a book which talks about a child moving from a cot to a bed and read it to your toddler, stopping to explain how that’s what they will also be doing.
* Involve them in picking out a bed – where appropriate of course!
* Involve them when it comes time to select blankets, quilt covers, pillows and maybe even a new special toy to share their big bed with.
* Ask your toddler to help you set up their new bed and let them choose where to position their pillows and toys.
* If your toddler is hesitant about the move, you can start by getting them to sleep in their bed during the day to begin with.
* Tell your toddler how proud you are of them moving into a big bed and how they are so special and grown up.
* If there is a special blanket or quilt they are particularly fond of from their cot, let them take this into their new bed to help give them a sense of security.
What do I do if my toddler won’t stay in bed?
Many children will get out of their bed during the night as it will be a novelty after being ‘stuck’ in a cot. Each time your child get’s out of bed, gently remind them that it’s bedtime before taking them back into their room, tucking them in and saying good night. In the early days you may need to repeat this process a few times until the understand once they are in bed it’s time to go to sleep.
How old was your child when they moved into a bed?
What tips do you have when it comes to transitioning your child from a cot to a bed?