Any advice on switching to a toddler bed? My two year old son didn't want me to lift him out of his crib this morning and he then showed me how he can climb out now. He's ready but were not any suggestions?

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Vicki - posted on 11/18/2008

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He is ready, and he's letting you know. If he can climb out of the crib, you have to consider his safety, i.e., falling. I do think the best thing is to get him a toddler bed that converts into a daybed. Typically these beds come with safety rails.

Katie - posted on 11/18/2008

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My children go to toddler beds on their 1st birthday. I've never had any problems with any of them. I put a body pillow on the floor beside the bed in case they fell out. The thing is, if you put things in the bed to keep them from falling out, then they never learn to stay put during sleep (toddler beds have half rails anyway). How do you think you learned how to stay in your bed? So, I let them fall. Not on the hard floor, but on something soft, so they wake up, but don't get hurt. After 2 or 3 nights of this, they never fell out again because they learned to stay put while sleeping. The problem with moms is they over think things. Your children are not going to break unless you hurt them on purpose. Do the best you can and let the rest happen. You can't protect your children from everything!! Beside that, if you don't let your child develope his/her emotions (by trying to make them happy all the time) you end up spoiling them and then have MAJOR issues down the road...Think teenage years. Being a mom is tough...So just tough it out! :)

Suzy - posted on 11/18/2008

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If you don't like the idea of a bed rail then put two cushions underneath the sheet. It's soft so won't harm your son but will not allow him to fall out of bed by rolling either. It worked with all three of my daughters and they felt very grown up as to them it looked as though they were in a 'grown up' bed

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Ann - posted on 09/18/2011

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I transitioned with an inflatable bed. We used the queen size & let him jump on it. Worked great

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With my daughter, we added a toddler bed to her room. Each day we would do the pre bed routine (reading saying prayers) in her toddler bed and then gave her the choice of where she wanted to sleep. If she wanted the toddler bed and then changed her mind we would put her in the crib without a fight. It took about 2 weeks and then she didn't want the crib anymore. We left it in her room for another 3 weeks or so and then we could remove it. It was simple. I also said that the bed is like the crib, no getting out after bed time. If she wants something she could call to me and I would come but if she got out, she didn't get what she had requested. It took a few times but we were consistent. This all happened when she was 22 months old. Good Luck!

Tracy - posted on 11/18/2008

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when i took my son out of his cot , as he was climbing out over the rail , he went straight into a single bed but we put it up against the wall and on the open side i put a full length bed rail so he wouldnt fall out.

Bruce-Cindy - posted on 11/18/2008

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We have 5 children and with all but our youngest, we transitioned out of the crib around their 2nd birthday. Our oldest (daughter) went directly to a twin bed (against wall) with a rail that was part of a bunk bed. She climbed out of the crib so we put the crib rail down and a chair right next to the crib so she could get in and out without falling until her bed was set up. Second daughter went to twin mattress on the floor. Third (son) used a metal toddler bed with attached rail and so did our fourth (daughter). Our youngest will be 2 next month and he has actually been on the bottom bunk bed for over 5 months (with bunk rail). He didn't adjust as quickly- may have been a bit too young, but he's been fine for months now. The hardest adjustment with each of them was for us as parents more than our children as it required more effort to train consistently until they learned to stay in bed (similar issues with each type of bed). It was hard to adapt to them walking into our room EARLY in the morning when they would normally have rested quietly in their crib or even gone back to sleep when they couldn't get out. I strongly encourage anyone who's child is showing signs of climbing out to get them in a bed of some sort asap. Before kids, I was an x-ray tech and I saw 2 yr olds with a fracture from falling out of their cribs. I hope it goes well for you.

Amber - posted on 11/17/2008

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My now 3 year old son was 2 1/2 when we switched. My son's crib was a 3 in 1. We were moving and decided to switch to the day bed (one rail off) when we moved. He was very excited, and there were no complaints. The first night I went to check on him before I went to bed and he wasn't in his bed! I checked mine and there he was! I moved him to his bed and he stayed there the rest of the night. Well, this continued and every night I brought him back to bed. Some nights he would get up several times! Every night before bed we would talk to him about staying in his big boy bed and he said he would stay but never did. He would also tell us he wanted a big bed like ours. We luckily had an extra set of mattresses and switched his bed to a full size. He has slept there since. He doesn't come to our bed until morning! We put it against the wall and he has never fallen out. He loves it! Good luck:)

User - posted on 11/17/2008

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I would try to keep him in a crib as long as possible for your sanity. my daughter climbed out of her crib at 19 months and we put a crib tent over her crib. now she stays in and I don't have to worry about moving her yet. good luck!

Lorrae - posted on 11/17/2008

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I switched my daughter to a toddler bed on her second birthday. (She is now 3 and is still in it.) The nice thing is that you can use your crib mattress. The first night she slept in her 'big bed' she fell out and then ended up rolling under the bed. She woke up at 1am screaming 'I'm stuck!'. I couldn't figure out what she was saying at first, but when I couldn't see her when I went into her room I realized what happened. She was fine, I thought it was hilarious and then stuffed a big blanket under the bed. I made sure to 'Abi proof' her room and put a gate up from her room to the rest of our apartment. Now she will wake up, turn her light on, beckon for me, then play while I get ready for work in the morning. I guess you need to figure out what you aren't ready for...the lack of control of not having him in a crib or saying 'goodbye' to the crib from a maternal momma perspective...or something else unrelated. Good luck with whatever you decide. Some great ideas on here!

Dana - posted on 11/17/2008

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Had the same problem!!! The first few weeks were Terrible. But things are smooth sailing now. Hang in. . .it will get better!!!

Lorilynne - posted on 11/17/2008

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I actually just switched my 20 month old daughter to a toddler bed about two weeks ago. I needed the crib for my son who was switching from the bassinet. We brought the bed home after her nap and she "helped" us put the bed together and move the crib out of her room. Bed time came and she was super excited to sleep in her big girl bed. Her bed just has the rails at the top of the bed and toddler beds are so low to the ground that if she did fall out it wouldn't be a big deal. My husband is kind of paranoid though so he always puts a pillow on the ground where there isn't a rail. I put the other side of the bed up against the wall. Also, if you don't have a consistent bed time routine, now is the perfect time to start one. We clean up toys, take a bath, brush her teeth, put her in bed (well, I make her climb in herself), read two books, sing a song, turn out the light and then give kisses. The first couple days took some patience keeping her in bed after lights out but now she's pretty good about staying in bed. My husband totally wasn't ready for the change and he didn't think she was ready for a bed but I think its worked out pretty well.

User - posted on 11/17/2008

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I bought a low profile twin bed and use side bedrails. I didn't want to have to buy a toddler bed and then have to buy another bed. The low profile is lower to the ground so they can climb in easily. You can get one at any furniture store that sells mattresses.

Melissa - posted on 11/17/2008

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I read a book that has saved my life many a time when it has come to sleep and my children, the suggestion it gives on transfering a child to a toddler bed, is don't do until they ask to sleep in the bed. I did this with my daughter (although she asked as soon as the bed was in her room) and we didn't have issues with the transition at all. She had been climbing out of her pack-n-play for a while by this time, but we had trained her not to get out during bed time.. The book is Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child by Dr. Mark Weissbluth.

Michelle - posted on 11/17/2008

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I actually didn't use rails, but the first few nights, i piled pillows on the floor. Both of my girls fell out of the toddler bed....maybe twice? They didn't get hurt because of the pillows, and i don't even think they woke up. After that, they never fell out again - either one.

Kimberly - posted on 11/17/2008

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Toddler beds with rails on the upper sides have worked great for us. We were worried about our toddler having too much freedom at first, but with a little patience, he took to things pretty fast.

Jennifer - posted on 11/17/2008

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we also bought a crib that could be made into a day bed at the right time. We took off the side bars, and changed it to just one rail. Then at about 18 months, we moved him right to a captin's bed. Pillows on the floor from our couch at night insured us that when he rolled out of bed he wouldn't hurt himself. It took about a week befor he wouldn't roll around so much, and I put his bed up against the wall too.

Kim - posted on 11/17/2008

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When we knew we'd move my now 5 year/old out of his crib, we took the side off of it first and put on one of those rails that you can put on beds. It worked well as a transition and it was ok if he tried to climb out.

Sandra - posted on 11/17/2008

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I would suggest skipping a toddler bed and moving right to a twin or queen mattress on the floor. You don't have to worry about rails or anything, or the expense of a "transitional" bed. We've always gone right to mattresses on the floor around 14-18 months for all of ours. Good luck!

Heather - posted on 11/17/2008

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We actually put the crib mattress on the floor for a while before putting our boy in the toddler bed. If you have a safe place to put it and can keep him from wandering out of his bedroom at night, you may want to try it. It made me feel better because if he fell out of bed, he could climb back on the mattress without problems and without hurting himself.

Jennifer - posted on 11/17/2008

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my 21 month old recently switched to a toddler bed because she kept crawling out and falling onto the floor. we have a Pali crib and were able to buy an attachment that is a guard rail (called a straight rail) that allows them to get in and out. she comes into our room every night and i continue to bring her back and tuck her in. not sure what kind of crib you have but just taking the side off and putting a rail up is a good transition! good luck:)

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