Transitioning from a cot to a bed can be a big step in any child’s life, but it doesn’t need to be a stressful one. In most cases, that transition is recommended when the child is between 18 and 36 months, depending on a range of factors. Finding the right time within this range may depend on them reaching a certain size, a certain age, or simply when you feel they are ‘ready’.
But, while you may have made the decision to transition, that doesn’t mean you know what kind of bed is best. When it comes to kid stuff, most parents research everything. What kind of pram should you buy? What kind of car seat should you invest in? What high chair, bouncer, tricycle and bath seat are best for your child? And now, what bed should you choose?
Research takes time, but it can offer many benefits. By choosing the right bed for your child, you can offer them a better quality of sleep, while providing them with the support and comfort they need as they grow. As your child develops, their spine needs to be supported correctly, which makes choosing the right mattress and bed all the more important.
HOW TO CHOOSE THE RIGHT BED
Knowing which bed to choose for your child means knowing what’s on offer. Are beds for toddlers or kids’ beds best for your child? Or should you opt for a single bed that your child will grow into? While the choice you make will be largely dependent on your own personal preference, there are some guidelines you can follow.
TYPE OF BED
You may opt for a kids’ bed. Beds for kids tend to be smaller than adult beds, sometimes coming in different shapes and styles, such as cars and princess castles. If your child is apprehensive about their move from a cot to a bed, these types of beds can help make bedtime more appealing.
However, if budget is a factor, you may find that your child grows out of this type of bed too quickly. The bed may only last for a few years before you need to buy a new one that better fits their size, weight and tastes. Instead, a good quality single bed may be a better option, as this is something your child can grow into over time.
TYPE OF MATTRESS
While it can be tempting to buy a cheaper mattress for your child – they may only be in it for a few years, after all – as with adult beds, you get what you pay for. If you’ve ever slept on a cheap, foam mattress, you’ll know how uncomfortable it is. Not only do you wake up achy and sore, it’s likely you will also feel unrested and grouchy from lack of good quality sleep as well.
Investing in a quality mattress, such as those offered by TEMPUR, can provide the comfort and support your child’s growing body needs. While latex and standard memory foam are not generally recommended (as they do not provide the support children need as they grow), TEMPUR material is designed to provide both comfort and support.
TEMPUR Hybrid combines the responsiveness of springs with the innovation of TEMPUR material. Alternatively, there is the full range of TEMPUR mattresses offering a firm or soft feel, or a freer ease of movement.
By choosing the right mattress, you can help support your child’s spine, while providing the comfort they need to enjoy good sleep. If your child develops growing pains in early adolescence, this increased level of comfort and support can also help to make sleep more restful and rejuvenating.
If your child runs hot, they may find it difficult to sleep at night. Certain types of beds make sleep even hotter, so it’s best to avoid these if possible. Some TEMPUR mattresses, such as the TEMPUR Original, TEMPUR Cloud and TEMPUR Sensation offer CoolTouch™ Technology, which can counteract overheating during sleep, by helping to absorb excess heat and staying cool to the touch.
Choosing the right mattress will also depend on your child’s preferred sleep position. Whether your child is a back sleeper, side sleeper, or stomach sleeper, find the mattress that offers the most support in this position. When your child is ready for a pillow, check out TEMPUR pillows to find the one that further supports their sleep position.
BENEFITS OF CHOOSING THE RIGHT BED FOR YOUR KIDS
The benefits of good sleep are wide-ranging. Research has shown that kids who regularly get the right amount of sleep for their age have improved attention and behaviour, learning and memory, and overall mental and physical health*. But, to get that sleep – and the associated sleep benefits – they need to have the right bed.
Choosing the right bed for your child means ensuring they get the support they need. A child’s spine and neck need to be in a neutral position as they sleep, to help minimise stress while allowing the spine to grow without any restrictions.
A toddler’s spine can grow as much as 1.5cm during the night**, as the intervertebral discs in between their vertebrae fill up with water. That means the mattress you choose has to be soft enough for your child to be comfortable while remaining firm enough to stop them sinking into it.
For children who sleep on an unsupportive foam mattress, their growing spine is placed under stress for prolonged periods of time. As their spine is very flexible, it is more susceptible to permanent deformation issues when placed in certain positions over long periods of time.
By choosing the right mattress, you can improve the comfort your child enjoys overnight, helping them to get better quality sleep while ensuring they remain supported as their spine grows and their body develops.