Imagine your newborn baby sleeping peacefully in her crib. Did you know that this is the safest place for your baby to sleep? That’s just one of the many benefits of putting your baby in a crib.
Putting your baby in a crib is an act of love, thanks to the many benefits it offers. Learn more about the benefits of putting your baby in a crib to sleep below:
1. They Are Safe
As part of their recommendations for safety and prevention of SIDS, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that parents use a crib as a sleeping surface for newborns. These recommendations are based on studies and research that indicates that the crib is one of the safest sleep surfaces for infants.
In addition, other research also supports the use of the crib as a safety measure. According to an article by Dr. Nakamura published in the Western Journal of Medicine, children under the age of 2 should sleep in a crib to avoid many risk factors associated with beds. Some of the risks of sleeping in adult beds are suffocation and strangulation. According to the article, even if a child sleeps in an adult bed alone, there are risks.
Every parent wants to keep their child safe. For this reason, it’s important to follow the safety recommendations for sleeping put out by entities such as the CDC. Some of the safety recommendations include:
- Put your baby on his or her back to sleep
- Use a safety-approved crib
- Keep your baby’s crib in the same room as yours for at least the first 6 months
- Don’t put blankets, pillows, or soft toys in your baby’s crib. Instead, put a fitted sheet on the mattress.
- Make sure your baby doesn’t get too hot. Don’t cover your baby’s head while sleeping.
As you can see, using a crib is an important part of keeping your baby safe while they’re sleeping.
2. Independent Sleeping
Would you like for your child to become used to sleeping by themselves? If so, starting out in a crib is a great way to prepare your child to become an independent sleeper. Your child will learn to sleep alone, especially if they are used to sleeping in a crib from the start. That way you don’t have to transition baby from your bed to a crib.
Looking for other tips to teach your baby to sleep independently? According to Nationwide Children’s Hospital, it helps to put baby down in the crib very drowsy, but not quite sleeping. This helps your baby learn to fall asleep on their own. Plus, this practice can help your child learn to fall back asleep on their own if they wake up in the middle of the night.
Ultimately, all babies are different and some are better sleepers than others. However, you can give yourself the best chance at encouraging your baby to be an independent sleeper by putting your baby to sleep in a crib.
3. You Get a Bed to Yourself
If you’re like most parents, you enjoy a little bit of space to yourself. After holding, bouncing, and carting your baby around all day, at night, you’re ready to have a little bit of space just for yourself.
When your baby sleeps in a crib, whether in your room or in their own nursery, you get to stretch out freely on your own bed.
4. Baby Stays Put
No matter how much you’ve baby-proofed your home, little crawling ones can get into anything. Once babies have learned to crawl and climb, there’s not much you can do but keep an eye on them every minute they’re moving!
However, what if your baby is out of bed and exploring at 5 am? You might not realize if your baby has gotten up if they’re sleeping in a regular bed. But, this wouldn’t happen if your baby slept in a crib. When babies sleep in cribs, they need assistance to get up and out of the crib. This is a wonderful benefit of crib sleeping. That way, your baby can’t get up and into unsafe areas of the house without you being aware.
A crib, in addition to being a safe place for sleeping, can also be a safe containment area when you need to keep baby safe. For example, when you’re vacuuming the nursery, you can pop baby safely into the crib to watch.
5. Can Convert
Cribs are typically only used for the first two years of a child’s life. After that, most people move their child to a “big kid” bed. However, instead of buying a whole new piece of furniture, many cribs can convert into toddler beds and full size beds extending the life of your furniture purchase. There are many benefits to using your former crib as a bed for your toddler.
First of all, you can save a lot of money by not buying a whole new piece of furniture. Plus, your child will already be familiar with the crib design, color, and the mattress. So, that means your child will feel comfortable sleeping in their new toddler bed. Finally, by converting your crib into a toddler bed, you can avoid changing the entire decor scheme of the nursery. Instead, you can simply make sure you have a beautiful quilt and bedding that matches the decor of the nursery and the color of the crib. Then you’re all set!
Tips When Choosing a Crib
- Choose a crib that has slats that are close together (at least 2 and 3/8 inches).
- Do not use cribs that have drop-down sides, as these can malfunction and have been banned by Consumer Product Safety Commission.
- Before and after purchasing your crib, check product recalls at the Consumer Product Safety Commission often to make sure your crib hasn’t been affected by any recalls.
The Bottom Line on Cribs
As you can see, there are many benefits to putting your child to sleep in a crib. It’s the safest place for baby to sleep, promotes independent sleep, leaves you with your own bed, keeps baby safe, and can often convert into a toddler bed and full size bed.