Experts recommend moving your baby into their own room at about six months old. It might sound simple enough, but here are a few things to bear in mind…
Make it familiar
Don’t just move your baby into their new room one day and expect them to feel instantly settled. Try and work up to it by letting them spend time there in the lead-up to the move. Let them lay on the floor and look around and get used to it, or pop them in the cot under a mobile (as in a cute dangly thing, not your phone, millennials..) while you potter around. That way it’s familiar when they do move in their properly.
Time it right
Make sure your baby is on top form before the move. If they’ve been suffering with a cold or been a bit under the weather with teething it’s probably best to wait until they’re back to full health so as not to cause them (and you) any further distress. Ultimately it doesn’t matter if you delay it by a few weeks or months if needs be.
Stick with the routine
Just because the place they’re sleeping in has changed, make sure that all the little routines and comforters don’t. For example if they’ve been used to sleeping in pitch black with white noise, continue that in their new room. The same goes for any pacifiers or teddies they previously relied on to sleep. That will help to make the transition as smooth as possible.
Take it one nap at a time
Rather than a sudden leap into their own room one night, start off by letting them have one of their daytime naps in their every day, then work up to all of their naps in there. This will mean that by the time they start sleeping in their at night it will feel like home.
It goes without saying that you should use a monitor so that you can hear your baby, unless their room is so close you can hear them anyway. For extra peace of mind you could invest in a sound and movement monitor which is fitted to your baby’s mattress and sounds an alarm if there’s a problem. Be warned though, these can sometimes sound a false alarm so make sure your nerves are up to it!
Track the temp
It’s a good idea to invest in a room thermometer to keep an eye on the temperature. There are many that are designed specifically for babies’ bedrooms on the market. Many experts recommend that the temperature should be between 20-22°C, which probably feels cooler than you would expect.
Don’t get too sentimental
While some parents practically leap for joy when they finally get their bedrooms to themselves again, for others it can be an extremely emotional, not to mention worrying, time. Of course, it signals the end of one aspect of the baby phase, but it doesn’t mean the bond is any less or that your closeness is over. It’s simply the next step in a long journey of helping you little one to become more independent. And you can still bring them into your room for morning cuddles…