when is the best time to move my son into a toddler bed

Amanda - posted on 02/20/2010 ( 26 moms have responded )

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i was just wondering when to make the change from a cot to a toddler bed.. my son is 14 months and not sure when to start making the change

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Nicole - posted on 02/21/2010

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My son was an easy switch...I'd here all sorts of noises in his room, and I'd find that he climbed over the railing of his crib, onto dressers, etc... I had to keep rearranging his room to try to prevent him from getting out and possibly hurting himself. But then I realized that this might end up in a long drop to the floor! So I made the switch just before his second birthday.

My daughter, however, is 21mos., and has not shown any interest in climbing out of her crib on her own. She still likes to snuggle up into a corner of the crib, so I think it still gives her a sense of security. I think it will be a little while yet before she needs another bed.

Just go with your gut...don't worry about what other people have done. Your son will give you signs. If he's not ready, then you'll end up with a boy that will be up & outta bed every two seconds! They need to be able to handle a little bit of freedom, otherwise you'll be up all night!

Good luck!

26 Comments

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Amber - posted on 11/21/2010

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i just started my 15 almost 16 month old in a toddler bed...and it is working out ok....he just gets up and comes to lay with me if he wakes up!!

Crystalyn - posted on 02/28/2010

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I just switched my son yesterday and he is 15 months old. I had to switch him because he was trying to climb out of his crib and I didnt want him to get hurt. Its NOT going so well at all! Goodluck and I would say keep him in there as long as possible, which he is good as long as he isnt trying to climb out.

Christina - posted on 02/26/2010

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Our daughter was about 13 months. We thought it best to wait til she was walking.

Amy - posted on 02/26/2010

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When my son at about 18 months could climb onto the sofa is when I switched the crib to toddler bed, that way I knew he could get in and out safely.

Pamela - posted on 02/25/2010

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As of what my kids doctor said the best is to wait until they are trying to climb on the inside or outside of the crib. My daughter is 2 and I just moved her into a bed with safety rails she loves it! but I'm glad I waited cuz now she doesn't let me know when she wakes up!

Sondra - posted on 02/25/2010

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My son is 2 1/2 and just started sleeping in a regular bed (with bedrails). My in-laws showed up one day with my husbands childhood bed one day. This was before my son was born. So this bed has been in his room since the beginning. I used it for storage for the better part of a year. When I decided it was time to clean it off my son, who showed no interest in the bed, was on it in a heartbeat. I purchased rails for it and started with him taking naps in the bed. I was able to leave him in his crib and let him fall asleep before and so I tried the same thing for the regular bed. He sometimes napped on the floor but I keep moving him into the bed after he falls asleep. He loves it! I could have tried to have him sleep in a regular bed sooner but he was sleeping soooo good at night, I was a bit selfish. He still doesn't sleep with a blanket or pillow but that is another issue. I say don't rush it. Let him decide when he is ready.

Felicia - posted on 02/25/2010

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I never put my son in a toddler bed til he was lil over 2 yrs old, but everyone is different when they transition there children over. My cousin had to do it with her lil girl at 11 months old, because she would climb out of her crib. I never had that prob with my son, prob could have kept him in his crib longer, but chose to do it when he was like 27 months old

Steph - posted on 02/24/2010

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i personally would wait another few months.you will see the signs that will tell u he is ready.if you change him from his cot into a bed you could have problems ,especially when it took him 8 mths to settle in his cot and you might confuse him if you use the cot and a bed.hope it all works out for you,im a firm believer in letting nature take its course.when your little man is ready it will be a smooth change. good luck!

Jessica - posted on 02/24/2010

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both of my children climbed out of their cribs at about 2 1/2 and that was the time!!!!!!!

Hanlie - posted on 02/24/2010

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We moved our son straight into a "big" bed (Ifeel the same as Amy Kruse about the toddler bed) when he was 14 months because we needed the crib for our second one who was due in 6 months. We only put "cot sides" on the big bed for a couple of months. At first we only put the bed in his room next to the crib and allowed him to climb on it etc. to get used to the bed. After about a month I let him take his daytime naps on the bed. Another month later we moved him completely to the bed but kept the crib next to the bed for a night or 2 untill we were certain that he's happy with the new bed then we took away the crib. Of course we made a big deal of the bed from the beginning with new linnen and everything and told him how big he is now etc. Everything may sound like alot of hassle but it made the transition much more smooth and everyone were happy in the end. Good luck!!

Lianne - posted on 02/24/2010

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I put my son in a toddler bed when he was 19 mnths,because i walked in his room and seen him standing there with his one leg over the side of the cot and was getting ready to pull the other one over,so thought it was time to get rid of the cot.

Andrea - posted on 02/24/2010

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I was about to say the exact same thing as Amanda above. It makes more sence to toilet train then the "big girl bed", but what ever works for u, my daughters 14months and im in the same boat :)

Amanda - posted on 02/23/2010

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Our doctor recommended moving our daughter after she was totally potty trained. We tackled that first and then moved her to her " big girl bed." She has done great. I guess you just want to make sure that you aren't making more than 1 major change at a time. Also, when you move them to a toddler bed they can get up during the night and wonder around your house by themselves unless you put a gate up to keep them confined.

Mandi - posted on 02/23/2010

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Well I moved my little girl to a toddler bed when she was 12 months old and she loved it. Make it like a game and reward him when he sleeps in it. First let him play on it and get used to it and eventually he will sleep in it.

Melody - posted on 02/23/2010

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We moved our son to a toddler bed before he was 1, but that was because our daughter was due when he was 14 months, and we wanted him to already be transitioned. Honestly, I think between 6 to 8 months is a decent age. I set up the bed in a corner, with something very soft (like a king sized pillow) under the free side (in case he climbed out) and completely baby-proofed his room. Then, he learned on his own to climb in and out of his bed. Also, he learned early that that meant bedtime and he pretty much falls asleep in the bed without getting out. I think, more important than the age is the WAY you transition. Make a steady bedtime routine before you begin the transition, and then don't change any of the routine except what bed you put him in. That way, he will still make the association.

Amanda - posted on 02/23/2010

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I would say when they start being able to climb on & off the couch safely on their own. I just started my daughter into her toddler bed last month at 18 months old. Plus we need the crib for the new baby & didn't want to kick her out when the new baby comes. She LOVES the fact that she can get in & out all by herself!

Amy - posted on 02/23/2010

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i tell this to everyone, so sorry if you've heard me. :) we didn't want to buy a toddler bed because we didn't have the money and already had a full sized bed. we just pushed it to the wall and put a side catch on it. our daughter was about 15 months. she only fell out once at 18 months after we took the side catch off. she LOVED her own giant bed. saved us money and she can sleep in that bed until she moves out! :) toddler beds are great if you have no space, otherwise i think it's a waste of money. you'll just have to eventually buy another bed again when they grow. may as well get them a twin now they can keep for 18 years.

Kim - posted on 02/22/2010

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i could hear my boy bumping the side of the cot in the nite so i switched him over then about 1yr8mnths for him he showed no signs of climbing out we put a stair gate on his door n made sure we had a gd routine n room wasnt to dark, he loved his bed but lately went throu not wanting to go sleep over 2 thinks hes missin sumit, we now tell him we will b up every 5min to check on him till asleep n do it which has stopped him getting up amazingly

Alecia - posted on 02/22/2010

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My daughter was 1 yr and 5 months when I moved her into her toddler bed. We were moving to a new house so I thought it might be a good idea to try it out I didn't wanna lug that stupid crib around anymore lol. It actually went alot smoother then I thought:) First day we set it up she loved it and played in it all day. When it came to bedtime she crawled right it, once I shut the door she wasn't so happy. I ended up putting her in her pack and play so she could fall asleep, and when I went to be dIput her in her big girl bed. She was fine all night and we never had a problem after. Now the issue is getting her to take a nap:) She likes to sit up and play with her toys instead of napping. Good Luck!!

Loree - posted on 02/22/2010

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I was waiting for my child to start climbing out of the crib as a sign she needed a toddler bed, but that never happened so we just put a mattress and boxsprings on the floor right before her 2nd birthday without the bedframe. It's just low enough for her to get into and because it is pushed into a corner, we haven't had any problems with her falling out. Plus, we didn't have to buy a toddler bed and then later a twin mattress so it saved us some money too. Good luck

Kerri - posted on 02/22/2010

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my son was 18 months when he went into a bed,we put lots of pillows on the floor around the bed and he only fell out once and hes now 3,personally i think it was a good choice to do it then cos alot of my friends waited til theres were 2 but had more probs trying to get them to stay in the bed,but its your choice at the end of the day and you have to feel comfortable with it x

LaToya - posted on 02/21/2010

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I moved both my boys out once they could crawl out... its usually a good indication that they are ready to move up, along with the toddler bed I put the rail on and put a baby gate at their bedroom door so they werent able to wonder around the house, and of coarse still had my baby monitor :)

Amanda - posted on 02/21/2010

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no he doesn't climb out just yet... but it took us 8 months just to get him to sleep in a cot and are trying to expand our family... and was thinkin about moving him slowly in to a toddler bed but not remove the cot...

Steph - posted on 02/21/2010

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hi,my son was 2 when we moved him into a bed,he was very un settled in his cot not having a lot of room to move about and banging his head when he was moving in his sleep,he could climb out of it and fearing he would hurt himself we put him in a bed with a safety rail.he loves his bed and sleeps better too.only u can decide if your son is ready for the move,can he climb out of his cot,if not id wait another few months.best of luck.

Claire - posted on 02/20/2010

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Both of our kids were out before their first birthdays, but for different reasons. Our daughter was out before age one because we were expecting our son and wanted her to have her own bed and the new baby would have a crib. Our son was out of the crib by age one because he lifted himself up and over the rail before he could climb well. He ended up using the crib matress on the floor until he was a better climber and could manage a toddler bed.



Of course, you know your son best. Change when you think he is interested -- a good clue is that he climbs on and off the couches and chairs unassisted.

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