How to Transition a Baby to a Crib
Understanding your baby's nighttime routine can be a huge struggle for new parents. Typically new babies will sleep in their parents' room for the first couple of weeks or months while both baby and parents are figuring out the new sleep schedule. It’s common for parents to feel frustration, anxiety, or exhaustion as you start to think about transitioning their baby to a crib. All of these feelings are normal for new parents, especially for mothers who held their babies in their bodies for the last nine months. To make the transition easier than ever we have gathered our favorite tips to help new parents know what to except when the baby comes home and make this transition go smoothly.
Ready the Crib
It’s important as you’re getting your crib ready before the baby arrives to have everything they’ll need. This includes a mattress, mattress cover, flat sheet, blankets, and swaddles or other baby gear. We recommend washing all of your baby's items before use for multiple reasons. One reason being your baby will feel more comfortable being able to smell familiar smells such as laundry detergent and your overall scent. We also recommend staying organized and having essential baby items like a diaper caddy next to the crib. This was you can stay in the same room while changing your baby.
New parents often think that transitioning their baby to a crib happens overnight. We’re here to tell you that’s usually not the easiest way. We recommend creating a schedule to transition your baby to their crib. Start by placing your baby in the crib for naps. You can easily stay in the room until the baby falls asleep in their crib. Introducing your baby to their new sleep environment slowly will help your baby feel more comfortable.
Create a Routine
Creating a nighttime routine will help your baby familiarize themselves with bedtime. We recommend creating a schedule at home that works for both you and your baby that you can do every night before bed. This might include something like a bath, sing a song, or nursing. Creating a nighttime routine will help your baby is into transition to their crib. Having a nighttime schedule for yourself will help the baby sleep easier.
Set Up Tools to Help
Don’t forget to use all the tools you can. Baby monitors are a great way to help transition your baby to the crib. Having a baby monitor in the room will help your ears as you will be able to keep an eye on your baby at all times! And trust us, your baby will let you know when they need something.
When to Transition a Baby to a Crib
Many parents are unsure when to transition their baby to a crib. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends moving your baby to a crib once your baby has outgrown their bassinet. Usually, by this time your baby is prepared to sleep in a crib. You’ll probably be ready for them to be in a crib as well!
How to Make the Transition Easier
During the crib transition, nighttime routines can be tricky for both the baby and parents. Maybe you’ve had a long day and you’re not feeling up to the routine or your baby is beyond tired and nothing will calm them. We’ve come up with a few tips for both the baby and parents to help make the transition easier.
Tips for the Baby
It’s important to create a comfortable resting place during your nighttime routine. Creating an environment for your baby to start to relax will help teach your baby it’s time for bed. Using things such as white noise machines, night lights, sleep sack, can be very helpful to soothe your baby. Another way to help your baby familiarize themselves with their new crib is practicing tummy time right in the crib. Plus, it is a great way to play with babies!
Tips for the Parents
Having a video monitor will ease your mind during the transition to your baby's crib. It’s important to remember to stay consistent and start small. And don’t forget to take time for yourself and indulge in self-care as this transition can be hard for new parents. Remember, there might be a time when you feel like you need help. That’s completely normal and don’t forget asking for help from a friend or the people around you. There are many do's and don'ts to help baby sleep.