When it comes to getting a baby to sleep, many parents turn to swings. Swings can be a great way to get a baby to calm down and fall asleep. However, what do you do when your baby is ready to move out of the swing but not quite ready for a crib? Keep reading for some tips on how to help your baby make the transition from swing to crib.

Swings are often a good way to help get your baby to sleep. In fact, many babies associate swings with falling asleep and being put down to sleep. Swings have been shown to be effective in helping babies fall asleep faster and allowing them to stay asleep for longer periods of time [1]. However, while this may make it easy to get your baby to sleep, what do you do when it’s time for them to move out of the swing but they are not quite ready for a crib? Keep reading for some tips on how to help your baby make the transition from swings to crib safely.

What to do when baby sleeps in swing but not crib:

1. Start getting them used to the new sleep arrangement

The first thing you want to do is start putting your baby in their crib or pack-n-play for naps and at night when they are drowsy but still awake. This will start helping them get used to being in a different place while sleeping.

2. Set up the crib or pack-n-play in the room where the swing is

The next step is to set up your baby’s new sleep area where their swing currently is. By having their new sleep arrangement already set up in the same room, they will start associating that location with falling asleep and being put down for bedtime.

3. Gradually have less time in the swing

Gradually start shortening how long your baby spends in the swing. This will help them get used to being awake in their new sleep location for longer periods of time. By having less time in the swing, you are also making it easier to fall asleep since they aren’t spending as much time in the swing.

4. Once they have been doing well in the swing for naps, start moving it to a different room

Once your baby has been doing well with being awake and falling asleep on their own at nap time while still in the swing, you can move it into another room during naps. This will be a good way to help start getting them used to being in a crib or pack-n-play for naps while also giving them the comfort of the swing that they have grown accustomed to.

5. Once they have been doing well at night, move it into their bedroom

Once your baby has successfully transitioned from swings to crib during nap time (and you are sure they are not going to roll out of the crib), you can start moving it into their bedroom and prepare them for transitioning from swings to a crib at night.

6. Transitioning from swing to crib at night

The final step will be transitioning your baby from the swing to a crib or pack-n-play at night. While this step is generally recommended after they have been successfully transitioning from swings to a crib or pack-n-play during naps, you may want to do it earlier if you plan on co-sleeping.

If your baby starts waking up at night and crying for the swing, just put them back in it until they fall asleep. If this becomes a pattern, you can start picking them up and putting them right back in the swing every time they wake up. This will help them learn that they need to go back to sleep on their own as it will be harder for them to fall asleep if you are putting them back in the swing every time they wake up.

What not to do when baby sleeps in swing but not crib:

1. Don’t try to transition them from swing to crib at night too early

Many parents will try to transition their baby from swings to a crib or pack-n-play at night before they are ready for it. While this can speed up the process, having your baby wake up and cry for the swing every night can cause some serious sleep regressions. Make sure your baby is making the transition successfully during naps before transitioning them at night.

2. Don’t let them sleep in it for too long

While letting your baby spend more time in the swing will help make the transition easier, you don’t want to let them fall asleep in it for too long. This can cause them to be overtired and have a harder time falling asleep on their own. Try to limit the amount of time they spend in the swing while awake and if they fall asleep, try to wake them up before putting them in bed for the night so they won’t be overtired.

3. Don’t move them to a “big bed” too soon

When transitioning from swings to crib or pack-n-play, many parents will start making the conversion by moving the baby’s sleeping location to a big bed. This is not recommended as it can cause more problems than it solves. If your baby falls asleep in the swing but wakes up crying for the crib, they won’t know how to fall asleep or stay asleep in their new bed. You would have to keep bringing them back to the swing every time they wake up until they learn how to sleep on their own in their new sleeping location.

4. Don’t let them nap in swing for too long

Many parents will also try to transition their baby from swings to a crib or pack-n-play at naps while keeping them in the same location. This generally makes the process longer because your baby will still be trying to fall asleep in the swing when they are actually sleeping. If you move it into another room, this will help them learn that they need to sleep on their own and can’t rely on the comfort of the swing.

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