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The Signs Your Child is Ready for a Toddler Bed – And When They Aren’t

The Signs Your Child is Ready for a Toddler Bed – And When They Aren’t

Children all grow at varied rates and, whether they shy away from the thought of a toddler bed or simply cannot wait to wave goodbye to their cot, their journey will be completely unique.

Although there are recommended guidelines for children’s beds and when to transition, no one understands their child quite like a loving parent. You’ve been there by their side every minute of their growth from birth, admiring them with pride and adoration, if anyone can identify a natural cause for change in their babies, it’s their parent.

Transitioning your child into their first toddler bed is a daunting task, with many parents feeling overwhelmed by when and how to do it. Fear not, we at Happy Beds like to consider ourselves as experts when it comes to beds and we’re here to help. Here are a few key signs your child is ready for a toddler bed (and tips for when they may not be):

They’re Growing… A Lot

One of the clearer signs that your child is ready to move on is that they’re simply growing out of their cot. Each night when you place your little ones into their cot for a cosy night’s sleep, they have grown a little more, and you will begin to notice a change how big they appear to be in their tiny cots.

This is one of the first signs that parents notice, as their arms and legs begin to grow and begin reaching the corners of their mattress. When did they get so big?

Operation Escape!

With growing, comes more independence, and with more independence comes more mischief! Your child may begin to attempt to climb the sides of their cot in hope of escape and freedom.

When your little ones start doing this, it is probably time to transition them into their new toddler bed. Climbing and trying to escape not only shows a decreased tolerance to the enclosed space, but it also poses a threat of injury. This is usually when parents begin to panic, but do not fear – buying a toddler bed has never been easier with the beauty of online shopping!

Showing Interest in a Big Bed


At around the same time as transitioning occurs, your child will have developed speech and can now understand certain concepts. They’ve seen your large bed in comparison to their tiny cot and, by nature, they want to imitate you and gain a little more independence of their own.

Be sure to listen out for signs that they are showing interest in having their own toddler bed. You can take this as an opportunity to get them engaged with the process and have them select their own bed, which will make the transition much more pleasant for both of you.

If they show signs of stress or fear at the concept of a toddler bed, they are likely not ready for the big change. Don’t force them into it, give them time and slowly introduce them to the idea.

Too Many Tears

As they begin to develop their wonderfully unique personalities, they can express their likes and dislikes (quite dramatically, sometimes). If your little one is showing negativity towards their cot, such as a reluctance to get in or crying to get out, they may be ready for a toddler bed. It’s all about listening to your child and understanding what makes them happy and comfortable.

Little Grown-Ups

There is nothing quite so fulfilling as watching your child grow and develop their own independence. Witnessing your child’s first steps is truly a magical moment and only reminds you that they will one day grow up and be adults themselves. If you notice that your child is comfortable and responsible enough to be unsupervised, they may be ready for their first toddler bed.

One of the most daunting things about transitioning your child to their own bed can be the worry of leaving them alone for an entire night, regular checks will ensure things are all okay until you’re fully confident that your little one can handle the full night’s sleep unsupervised – a proud moment for all involved!

The Boundary Test

Place your child in a bed and examine their behaviour – what do they tend to do? If they are actively trying to climb out of the bed and avoid settling down at all costs, they are most likely not ready for independent sleeping. If they stay in their bed without supervision, then they should be happy in a toddler bed.

This test allows you to identify if your child has grasped an understanding of boundaries. If achieved, they will be able to sleep in a bed without clear cot barriers having to keep them contained.


How is Their Sleep?

When making such a big decision as a cot transition, it is always beneficial to conduct a little analysis before the big move. Take some time to analyse how your child is sleeping – are they showing signs of distress or are they sleeping well? Perhaps their sleeping issues could be resolved with a new sleeping solution, which may be the go-ahead to introduce independent sleeping.

Remember, it’s all about experimenting. There is no certified age in which children must be transitioned into a toddler bed. So, if they are showing no signs of unhappiness in their cot at a young age, there’s no reason to force it.

A Learning Curve

Naturally, a child grows and slowly makes their way through the endless skills needed for human survival. The majority of the time, toilet-training will arise around the same time a toddler bed is beginning to be considered. If your child is well underway to becoming a toilet expert, you should consider opting for a toddler bed. This will make it easier for them to reach the bathroom if needed and will make toilet-training a lot easier for them to understand.

I know, so much change can be overwhelming – look how fast your little one is growing.

Is Your Little One Ready for a Big Kid Bed?

We would love to hear all about your transitioning stories! Perhaps you have some expert tips that you’re dying to share? Contact us via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to share your ideas, and don’t forget to check out our range of cute toddler beds. Happy sleeping!

Read more: How to Design the Perfect Bedroom for Your Toddler

A First Big Kid Bed