When should baby move out of your bedroom?

Mar 15, 2012 at 12:30 p.m. ET

This is a question many new parents ask and one that can start up a hot debate among parents and experts alike. There is no easy answer to this and it's more a case of how your baby is doing and what you feel comfortable with. Here are some pointers to help you decide when it is the right time to move your baby to their own bedroom.

Baby nursery

Don’t even think about it for the first month

When you bring your baby home from the hospital it is natural to want to have them as close to you as possible. Never put them in the same bed as you as studies have shown this may cause Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and mothers have been known to accidentally smother their babies. However, a crib next to you is the perfect place for your newborn. This will make it easier for you to feed them, get to know their breathing patterns and have peace of mind that your newborn is fine. In this first month don’t worry about when they should go and the best way to do it – simply enjoy having your baby around.

When is it OK?

As long as your baby has no health problems they can be moved into their own bedroom at 4–6 weeks old. However, some parents prefer to keep them in the same room for much longer, which is also fine if that’s what suits. Sometimes it is difficult to sleep well when you have an infant in the same room, as you subconsciously listen out for every little noise and move they make. This is when moving your baby can be quite important, as you need to get a good night's sleep and be alert for the following day. Having your own bedroom to yourself again can also be quite an important factor in restoring some intimacy into your relationship, which experts now say is an important step to take after three months of giving birth.

Once you have decided, take it slowly

If you don’t feel completely comfortable with a clean break, take it slowly and start by moving your baby’s crib further away from the bed. Then put the crib as far away from you in the room as possible and see how you fare. Once you have successfully managed this for a few nights you can make the big move and put your child into their own bedroom. You may decide you want to sleep with them for the first few nights while they become accustomed to their new surroundings. After that, place a baby monitor in their bedroom so you can still hear them crying and keep your and their door open.

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