When Should I Shift my Toddler to a Bed?

Updated: Mar 3

Babyletto hudson white converted to a toddler bed

Your little one will undergo many milestones throughout their childhood, and the transition from a baby crib to a toddler bed is one of them! While some toddlers are able to make the switch to a bed at around 18 months, others may not want to until they’re 3 or older.

(There’s no hard and fast rule for this, so don’t feel like your child is behind if other parents are transitioning their children earlier!)

A toddler bed is a type of bed that’s low to the ground and fits standard crib mattresses.

Usually, the shift to a toddler bed is done when your child starts trying to climb out of his bed when they’re at the height of the baby crib railings. And if you have an active child, this could be pretty dangerous!

Read on to find out when and how you can initiate this transition for your child.

Signs your little one is ready for the shift

1. They can climb out of the crib

toddler climbing out of crib

This typically happens when your child is around 90 cm tall. Because of their height, they’re big enough to easily climb out of the crib themselves. The crib then becomes a safety hazard as they can fall while climbing out.

2. You’re in the process of potty training

toddler on potty training

You want your child to be able to get out of bed easily when they need to use the toilet. With a toddler bed, your toddler can get in and out of bed quickly to make those trips!

3. They can no longer fit in the crib

toddler outgrowing his own crib

If your child can easily touch both ends of the crib from top to toe, it’s time to upgrade to a toddler bed. This may happen sooner if you opted for a mini crib to start with.

4. There’s another baby on the way

toddler kissing tummy of pregnant mom

If you’ve got another bun in the oven, it may make more sense to shift your child to a toddler bed instead of buying a second crib. We’d recommend doing this if your first child is 18 months or older.

However, be careful of giving your toddler the impression that you’re replacing them with another child. Begin the transition a month or two before the new baby arrives so that they have time to get used to their big toddler bed.

Tips to make the switch easier

Consider the bed height

active sleeper Baby almost falling off of bed

You want a bed that’s low to the ground to prevent injuries, especially if they’re active sleepers.

You can opt to place their crib mattress on the floor as part of the transition. Or you can choose to also add barriers on the bed to help prevent your child from accidentally rolling off the sides!