When Should I Transit My Baby to Toddler Bed?

When Should I Transit My Baby to Toddler Bed?

Transitioning from a cot to a toddler bed is a significant step in your child’s development, but timing is crucial. If you’re facing toddler sleep problems, moving out of the cot too early might not be the solution, but it often worsens sleep issues. Before the age of 2.5 years old, most toddlers lack the developmental capacity to understand the concept of staying in bed. While creating a “big boy” or “big girl” room is exciting, keeping your toddler in the cot a bit longer can make the eventual transition to a toddler bed much smoother. For those in Singapore, If you’re unsure about the transition or want personalized advice, consider reaching out for professional advice and guidance from a baby sleep consultant Singapore. Remember, there’s no rush to transition toddlers out of their cots. If you decide it’s the right time, here are some tips to make the transition to a toddler bed smoother for you and your child.

Every child will eventually transition to a toddler or twin bed, but recognizing the signs is key. If your toddler constantly climbs out of the cot, it becomes a safety issue, and transitioning becomes necessary. However, before making the move for this reason alone, there are strategies to keep your child safely in the cot a bit longer. Ensure the cot mattress is at its lowest position, consider turning the cot around, push it into a corner, and use a sleep sack.

Another sign is when your toddler expresses a desire for a big girl or big boy bed, typically around 3 years old. Some toddlers never climb out of the cot but may show an interest in more adult-style beds. If your child is physically too big for the cot, making them uncomfortable or challenging to lift, it’s a clear sign to transition, usually around 3 – 3.5 years old. If your toddler hasn’t exhibited these signs and sleep isn’t going well in the cot, delaying the transition is advisable.

Certain situations indicate when not to transition to a toddler bed. If you have a new baby needing the cot, transitioning might make your toddler feel pushed aside, creating unnecessary stress. During significant transitions, like adding a new baby, it’s wise to avoid unnecessary changes. Instead, consider alternatives like borrowing a portable cot or using a bassinet, or a play yard for the new baby. Transitioning to a toddler bed won’t magically fix sleep issues, it might even make sleep more challenging. If others pressure you to move your child out, resist the pressure, as every child is unique in their readiness.

Tips to Transit Your Baby to Toddler Bed

To facilitate a smooth transition, ensure the room is safe by addressing potential hazards. Involve your child in the process, discussing the new “big kid bed” beforehand. Let them make simple choices, like selecting sheets or choosing a stuffed animal for the new bed. Clearly communicate expectations about staying in bed.

Maintain your normal bedtime routine, providing familiarity and security. If your child gets out of bed, calmly guide them back without making it a big deal. Early morning waking might occur initially as the toddler bed isn’t yet familiar.

If a 2-year-old struggles to stay in bed, it might be a sign they aren’t ready for the transition. Waiting until children are over 3 years old is recommended, as their impulse control is more developed. If your child is under 3 and struggling, consider reverting to the cot if it’s a safe option. For a successful transition, start with a great sleeper. It’s never too late to establish loving boundaries around sleep for a successful sleeper.

What to Expect? How to Deal With Them?

Things will not always go smoothly when they need to adapt to something new. So, expect to experience the following, and learn how to deal with each happening.

When Should I Transit My Baby to Toddler Bed?

1. Toddler falling out of the bed

This may happen if there is no side railing installed by the bed. Some is getting used to for your toddler, such as not rolling so much in their sleep. What might help would be putting pillows on the floor to absorb the impact of falling, or putting the mattress directly on the floor so the distance of the fall is not too big.

2. Don’t expect an easy transition – toddler keeps coming out of the room

Your toddler may not be used to having so much freedom just yet. So, he/she may keep coming out of his/her room to join you for comfort and company. Or perhaps, nighttime might appear to be a time of adventure. It is a new experience and it could be thrilling for your toddler to be secretly exploring the house at night. You must be patient with him/her, and you might need to keep putting your toddler back to bed as it is important for him/her to have a good night’s rest. So, do praise them as well when he/she manages to do it on his/her own and let them feel proud of being able to do it.


In conclusion, transitioning to a toddler bed is a significant milestone. Following these tips and recognizing your child’s unique cues will make the process smoother for the entire family. If you’re navigating toddler sleep training Singapore, Sleepy Bubba offers expert guidance. Schedule a complimentary 20-minute discovery call today to embark on the journey to better sleep for your toddler. Remember, patience is key, and understanding your child’s readiness is crucial for a successful transition.