How to Transition Baby to Crib

Last Updated on June 28, 2024

chelsey borson baby sleep consultant
Chelsey Borson
Certified Baby Sleep Consultant
How to Transition Baby to Crib

For many new parents, the question of how to transition baby to crib can be a challenging phase, However, parents should understand that a crib provides a safe and comfortable environment, which helps babies sleep longer and improves the quality of their sleep. This article provides you with a complete guide and expert advice on how to transition your baby from bassinet to crib.

Luna Leaps is one of the best resources for new parents seeking sleep consultation for their babies. Our certified pediatric sleep consultant, Chelsey Borson, offers effective solutions to help your baby transition to a crib with ease. Make the leap and contact Luna Leaps today to give your baby a restful sleep throughout the night.

Why Transitioning to a Crib Can Help Your Baby Sleep Better

Transitioning your baby to a crib can significantly improve their sleep quality and overall well-being. Similar to a bassinet, a crib provides a safe sleeping environment, which helps reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).

However, as your baby grows, they will need more space to move and stretch comfortably. A crib offers ample space, which makes it an ideal sleeping place that helps babies sleep undisturbed for longer periods. This can result in fewer night wakings and a more consistent sleep schedule.

When Should You Transition Baby to a Crib?

Transitioning the baby to a crib can be challenging and a guesswork to most first-time parents. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the recommended age for crib transitioning is at least after six months.

Here are 5 ways to determine when to transition baby to a crib:

Baby Starts to Roll Over and Sit Up

When your baby starts to roll over or sit up, it’s high time that you transition your baby to a crib. The crib provides more space for your baby to move safely and comfortably, which reduces the risk of them rolling out of a smaller sleep space like a bassinet.

Baby Has Outgrown the Bassinet

If your baby reaches the weight limit of the bassinet, usually around 15 to 20 pounds, it’s time to transition to a crib. A crib can better support your baby’s growing size and weight. Also, a crib provides a safer and more comfortable place to sleep.

Baby Sleeps in Longer Stretches

If your baby starts to sleep in longer stretches during the night, it indicates they are comfortable in their current sleep environment. This is a good time to transition baby from a bassinet to a crib, as it provides a more restful sleep environment where they can continue to develop their sleep patterns.

Baby is Uncomfortable in the Bassinet

Transitioning baby to a crib can provide a more secure sleep environment if they become too big or uncomfortable in their bassinet. A crib is more spacious for your baby, which allows them to stretch and move and reduces night awakenings.

Baby Develops Self-Soothing Skills

When your baby begins to self-soothe, especially when drowsy, it’s a good time to transition them to a crib. Self-soothing skills enable babies to fall asleep independently. Helping babies practice this skill in a crib can be easier as there are fewer distractions.

Common Challenges of Transitioning to a Crib

Transitioning baby to a crib can come with its own set of challenges, which include the following:

Resistance to Change

Your baby may view their crib as an unfamiliar environment. This unfamiliarity may result in your baby resisting crib transition. Gradually introducing your baby to the crib during naps can ease this problem.

Disruption in Sleep Patterns

Introducing your baby to a new sleeping space can disrupt their sleeping patterns. To ease this transition, establish a consistent bedtime routine that will serve as a sleep cue for your baby.

Safety Concerns

Another challenge in crib transition is that some parents may worry about their baby’s safety due to SIDS. Use a firm mattress to ensure better infant sleep. A baby monitor can help you keep an eye on your baby.

Self-Soothing Difficulties

Babies who are used to falling asleep with assistance, such as rocking or nursing, may experience difficulty self-soothing in a crib. Encourage your baby to self-soothe by placing them in the crib while they are drowsy but still awake. This helps them learn to fall asleep independently.

Setting Up a Safe Sleeping Environment in the Same Room

Room-sharing is an effective option for parents who want their baby to sleep in their own room. Here are 5 ways on how you can do that:

Placing the Crib in a Safe Spot

Position the crib away from potential hazards, such as blinds, cords, and windows. Keeping the crib in a safe spot helps reduce the risk of accidents and promotes a secure sleep environment for your baby.

Using a Firm Mattress

The crib should have a firm mattress that fits snugly without gaps. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends safe sleep practices for babies, such as using a flat mattress to avoid suffocation hazards.

Keeping the Crib Bare

A bare crib is the safest sleeping environment for your baby. Remove any heavy or loose blankets, pillows, and stuffed animals to minimize the risk of SIDS.

Maintaining a Comfortable Room Temperature

If your baby has their own room, keep the room temperature comfortable, ideally between 68-72°F (20-22°C). A well-regulated room temperature promotes better and safer sleep.

Ensuring Proper Lighting

Use dim lighting or a nightlight to create a calm and soothing sleep environment. Proper lighting creates a signal to your baby that it’s time for sleep at night. This also makes night awakenings less disruptive.

Steps to Making Babies Sleep Well During Crib Transition

For some babies, a smooth transition from bassinet to crib can be challenging. Here are 4 steps that you can follow to make the transition easier for you and your baby:

Familiarize Your Baby with the Crib

Before transitioning baby to a crib, allow your baby to familiarize themselves with it. You can do this either by letting them play them play in the crib during the day or by placing them in the crib while they are awake.

Create a Comfortable Crib Environment

The crib should have nothing in it except for a firm mattress, particularly for babies younger than 12 months. You may also use a white noise machine or any sound machine to create a soothing environment. A sound machine usually mimics the natural sound environment of the womb.

Remember to Start Small and Take Time

Let your baby take their naps in the crib before moving on to sleep there throughout the night. This allows your baby to get used to the new sleeping environment without the added stress of being alone at night.

Always Respond Calmly to Night Wakings

Transitioning baby to a crib can take time. Be prepared when your baby wakes up and cries in the night. Keep the lights dim and use a soft, soothing voice while you attend to them.

Can Luna Leaps Help?

Luna Leaps offers expert guidance for parents navigating the challenges of transitioning their baby to a crib. With the help of its founder and certified pediatric sleep consultant, Chelsey Borson, Luna Leaps can provide evidence-based solutions tailored to your needs. Contact Luna Leaps to get personalized advice on how you can transition your baby to a crib easily and successfully.

chelsey borson baby sleep consultant

Chelsey Borson

Owner & Certified Baby Sleep Consultant

Hi, I'm the founder of Luna Leaps. As a certified sleep consultant with the Institute of Pediatric Sleep and Parenting, I bring expertise and compassion to helping families establish healthy sleep habits. As a mom of two, including one with special needs, I understand the struggles of sleepless nights and the toll it can take on the whole family. But with a personalized plan tailored to your child's unique needs, we can work together to improve sleep and overall well-being. Let's start this journey towards better sleep together.

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At Luna Leaps,  we're committed to helping your family achieve better sleep. Our expert baby sleep consultants provide personalized solutions to help your little one establish healthy sleep habits and wake up feeling refreshed.


Located in Los Angeles, CA and helping families nationwide.

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