A bassinet is small bed that holds a baby in a cradle position. They are typically used for infants up to six months old and provide more mobility, as they can be moved around the room with ease. They are often used as a temporary sleeping solution before transitioning to a crib. This blog post will teach you everything you need to know about how long your baby can sleep in a bassinet.

Healthy Children Organization recommends that all babies sleep on their backs to reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome. It is important to note that bassinets reduce the risk of SIDS and other sleep-related infant deaths, but do not eliminate them. Therefore, it is always recommended to transition your infants from bassinet to crib by following the guidelines below.

What is a Bassinet & How does it Differ from a Crib?

A bassinet is a type of crib designed to hold a baby for an extended amount of time. They’re usually much smaller than regular cribs, as they are intended to cradle a newborn baby for at least a few months after they are born.

bassinet differs from a crib in several ways: It is smaller than a crib as it is not intended for an extended period of usage, and it’s lightweight and easy to move. A crib is safer for an older baby than a bassinet because it has the ability to lower the mattress creating higher side rails.

Let’s have a look at some common features that make them different from each other.

Cost & Longevity
  1. Affordable
  2. Up to 4-6 month*
  3. Holds up to ~20 lbs.
  1. Expensive
  2. Up to 3-4 years*
  3. Holds up to ~50 lbs.
Size & Space
  1. Compact
  2. Occupies less space
  3. Some are foldable
  4. Light in weight
  5. Easy to Move
  1. Large
  2. Occupies large space
  3. Only Travel cribs are foldable
  4. Heavy in weight
  5. Difficult to Move
  1. All bassinets are portable
  2. Only a few are travel friendly
  3. Move anywhere in the room
  1. Only a few cribs are portable
  2. Only a few are travel friendly
  3. Fixed Location
  1. Some have vibration, music & nightlight
  2. Often have easily gliding wheels
  3. Many have attached storage pocket on outside
  1. Do not come with soothing accessories
  2. Some cribs have wheels
  3. Accessories such as canopies, mobiles, and bumpers are not safe additions

How Long Can My Baby Sleep in a Bassinet?

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, your baby should have outgrown their bassinet by six months old. How do I know if my baby is ready to sleep in their room? Sleeping alone is a huge milestone in an infant’s life. It marks the beginning of a new chapter in their development.

The AAP recommends room sharing for at least 6 months “because it can decrease the risk of SIDS by as much as 50%.” You may want to consider moving your baby to their room at 4 months old if you choose to sleep coach so they cannot see you after you lay them down safely on their back. Babies who sleep alone tend to sleep longer, stay calmer throughout the night, and feel more secure.

3 Reasons To Transition to a Crib!

Most babies transition into the crib between 3 to 6 months. If your baby is still sleeping peacefully in the bassinet, it might not be time to rush into transitioning the baby to a crib. However, the longer you wait can determine the more resistance encountered with your baby. So let’s go over some points that will guide you when to transition.

1.) Size that Provides Comfort to Baby

Bassinets come in a variety of sizes and shapes. The bassinet must provide your baby with adequate support. For safety, you should purchase a bassinet from a reputable retailer and look for safety standards JPMA or ASTM certified. When buying a bassinet, look for a strong enough bassinet to withstand your baby’s weight. Read the manufacture’s weight limit, which is often between 15 and 20 lbs.

Check out this table from the CDC showing the average weight of infants.

Age50th Percentile Male Infants   50th Percentile Female Infants
Birth7.8 lbs. (3.5 kg)7.5 lbs. (3.4 kg)
0.5 months8.8 lbs. (4.0 kg)8.4 lbs. (3.8 kg)
1.5 months10.8 lbs. (4.9 kg)9.9 lbs. (4.5 kg)
2.5 months12.6 lbs. (5.7 kg)11.5 lbs. (5.2 kg)
3.5 months14.1 lbs. (6.4 kg)13 lbs. (5.9 kg)
4.5 months15.4 lbs. (7.0 kg)14.1 lbs. (6.4 kg)

2.) Baby is 4-6 Months Old

Before you know it, your infant will be too big to sleep comfortably in a bassinet. You might notice, while sleeping, your baby slithering diagonally and appearing scrunched, causing them to sleep in an uncomfortable position. For this reason, it’s recommended that you get your baby out of the bassinet as soon as they reach four to six months old. In addition, a baby may learn to sit up as early as six months old. A bassinet’s side rails are not high enough to safely contain them once they pull themselves up to a sitting position.

3.) Baby Starts Rolling

Once a baby can roll from their back to their belly, you should consider beginning to transition him from his bassinet to his crib. Your baby will typically begin to roll from their stomach onto their back, and then vice versa around four months of age. Once they roll, the bassinet will not be big enough to sleep in or safe, as the crib has wooden rails with no fabric. When transitioning to a crib, please remember crib bumpers are not recommended as they may obstruct infants’ airways.

I hope these bassinet sleep guidelines are helpful for all the new parents and help you to make a valuable decision in the future. If you need additional support, please reach out to Boston Baby Nurse & Nanny for overnight newborn care or daytime newborn and postpartum support.

About The Author

Mom and daughterSakshi Patel is a busy Mom who enjoys spending most of her time with her daughter and dog. She has a Ph.D. in Human Science (HDFS). She enjoys writing based on her personal experience and products she has used. Her knowledge of baby products is excellent as she is very selective when buying baby essentials with detailed research. Read more of Sakshi’s reviews on Getforbaby.com.