One minute, your baby is a little dot who sleeps soundly in a crib or Moses basket; the next, they’re graduating to a cot and possibly even their own room! Making the switch is a time of transition for both you and baby: take a look at our guide on changing from a crib to a cot for help on how to adjust.
When Should You Switch From Crib To Cot?
For the first six months of your baby’s life, they should sleep in the same room as you, on their own sleeping surface. A Moses basket or crib is a great option for this time; at around four to six months old, you can begin moving your baby into a larger bed like a cot.
At six months old, you may also want to move your baby into their very own bedroom if space allows! This can feel a little daunting, with the potential for both parent and baby to experience a little separation anxiety as you both adjust. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to make the switch a little easier for the both of you.
Begin the transition from crib to cot with your baby’s day time nap routine, to avoid disruption to their sleep at night. This could take the form of putting your baby down for day time naps in their usual night time sleeping space if they’re used to napping with you around; before moving on to taking their day time naps in their new cot and nursery. This will help them get used to their new sleeping arrangements, before they make a more permanent move.
Switching from crib to cot is a big change, so making a gradual shift can be a good way to help your baby to adjust. For the first few weeks, try placing their Moses basket or crib near to their cot to help them become familiar with it. If they sleep in a Moses basket, you could even place this in the cot while they take their naps.
In a brand new sleeping environment, help your baby to feel calm and secure by keeping things as familiar as possible. Continue using their usual sleeping bag or blanket once they move over to their cot; if you’re planning to get all new cot bedding, wash it in your normal detergent and let your baby sleep with it in their crib or Moses basket first, to help them get used to the scent.
It can also help to carry out feeds and/or nappy changes in their nursery, near to their cot, to get them comfortable with their new room.
With such a big change happening in your baby’s life, it’s a good idea to keep everything else as normal as possible while you swap over from crib to cot. Now may not be the time to change up their bedtime routine - you’ll want to keep things as familiar as possible, to help ease the transition. Change is good, but too much can be overwhelming for your baby.
Switching from crib to cot is a big change, and it may take a little time before you’re both used to the new sleeping arrangements. This is perfectly natural!
Don’t be hard on yourself if either you or baby experience a little separation anxiety during this period of change: you’re doing great, and you’ll get there.