June 29, 2008,
H.D. asks from Rancho Cordova, CA on June 27, 2008
Time for a Big Boy Bed! Foam Mattress vs Spring Mattress
We are getting "big boy beds" for our 2 year old twin boys. W are debating whether we should get them spring mattresses, or foam mattresses. My fear about the foam mattress is that it will be hotter, and harder to clean. And my fear about the spring mattress is that they will be more likely to jump on the bed. Does anybody have any advice on which is better; spring or foam? Also, I'm afraid that getting them to sleep will be a battle now because they won't be "trapped" in the crib. So, any advice you can give about teaching them to stay in the bed would be great to!
E.V. answers from San Francisco on June 27, 2008
it's all preference. i say a spring mattress, jumping on a foam mattress would be boring. isn't jumping on your bed part of being a kid?
M.A. answers from San Francisco on June 28, 2008
We noticed a unique occurrence with our son who is about to turn 2. About 5 months ago while in the crib we noticed that he was not sleeping well and waking up a lot during the night. He would also wake really early and when he did, he was mad and crying. Then he started telling us, "DOWN, DOWN!" Desperate and sleep-deprived, we took a chance and put the crib mattress on the floor and started telling him "big boy bed". Not only does he love it, wants to show everyone and suddenly has seem to mature practically over night, but he also sleeps better. I think the freedom of being able to come get us if he's afraid or needs comfort helps him to sleep better. And when he does come to get us, we don't make a big fuss, we just keep quiet and tuck him back in. For those tough moments when he doesn't want to go back to bed, we again bring up the "big boy bed" and he needs to go to sleep because it's night night time. It has been much easier than what we were going through with the crib, and him being very unhappy about being trapped.
So having said all of that, I think the spring or foam decision is completely yours. We've had both and had accidents on both and neither are fun or easier to clean. And they will be happy jumping on either one.
But tips for transferring to a big kid bed: make a it a big deal for them, maybe even having a big kid bed party with grandma and grandpa etc and getting new sheets or a pillow that they like. Explain in kid terms that at night time you stay in your big kid bed just like mommy and daddy stay in their big bed. Praise them over and over when they get it and get excited about sleeping at night time. If you're desperate and nothing else is working, tell them that they have to sleep in their crib again if they can't stay in the big bed. Oh, and also be aware that some kids find comfort and actually WANT their crib. A friend of mine has a daughter who turns 3 soon and they just made the transition!
Hope this helps!!!
T.B. answers from Sacramento on June 27, 2008
We just bought my 2 year old a new bed with a foam mattress. We purchased a water proof mattress pad to put on it to protect if from potty accidents and vomit etc. She seems to love it, and I have lied down on it and found it very comfortable too. Foam tends to be a bit more firm than spring, but that is what I prefer. As for jumping, both my kids (4 & 2) have already been jumping on the bed and they don't seem to care that it doesn't have springs. I don't really know why foam would be hotter than a spring mattress, but my daughter doesn't seem to mind. As for getting them to sleep, at that age they don't understand the imaginary boundries of the bed, so it can be a challenge. We put a baby gate on the bedroom door, so that she isn't coming out all night long. Night time is fine, it is naptime that I can't get her to stay in her bed, she just gets out and plays over and over. Some kids don't have this problem though. I have a friend that has a daughter that has never once gotten out of bed. She doesn't even get out in the morning, she just calls from bed for someone to come get her. I was never that lucky, but the novelty of being able to get up does wear off eventually. I think it took about 6 months with my son to learn to stay in bed, with my daughter we are only about a month out so we will see how long it takes with her.
S.S. answers from Yuba City on June 29, 2008
Hi H.. My son was forced to go to a big boy bed because sister was born. Not good! He went from his crib to our bed. I just got him to sleep in his own bed (still comes in our bed sometimes in early morn) and it's been a year and a half! I wouldn't put them into a bed unless they're trying to get out of the crib!!!! You're going to have to sleep with them, they're going to be scared. It's like having a newborn (X2) all over again!!! Good luck!