Watching your child grow up is both bittersweet and rewarding. As he or she outgrows old toys, shoes, and clothes, you’re reminded that your kiddo won’t stay small forever. Although knowing when it’s time for a new pair of sneakers is easy, it can be tricky to know if your child is ready for an adult-size bed.
Whether you buy a mattress online or shop in person, it’s important to consider your child’s specific needs. Every kid is unique, and likewise, there isn’t a singular best mattress for kids.
With so many mattress options to choose from, buying one can become overwhelming. But there’s no need to stress. At Mattress World Northwest in Oregon, parents can rely on expert help and attentive service to find just the right mattress for their children.
Whether your child is in a crib or has a learner’s permit, providing them with a properly sized mattress is important to their overall well-being and development. If your child has outgrown their mattress, they may experience problems falling and staying asleep. Children that don’t get enough sleep may have difficulty paying attention, socializing with others, and performing in school.
On the other hand, studies show that kids who get an adequate amount of sleep over time have improved memory, learning, creativity, and mental and physical well-being. For this reason, it’s important to buy a new mattress for your child once you suspect they’re outgrowing it.
Although your child’s current mattress may come with some general age guidelines, some children grow faster than others. Parents can look for a few telltale signs that will let them know when to upgrade their child to an adult mattress.
From infancy until the age of two or three, a crib mattress is appropriate for your baby. Crib mattresses are at least 27¼ inches wide, 51¼ inches long, and a maximum height of 6 inches. Although crib mattress sizes are standardized, it’s important to check the tag on your baby’s crib for exact measurements.
When your baby reaches toddler age, they will require more room to rest comfortably. Some children, however, need to make the transition sooner than others.
If you notice that your child’s feet or head brush the ends of the crib frequently, it’s time to set them up with a new mattress.
By the time your child is a toddler, they’re bound to need a twin-size mattress. Twin-size mattresses are 38½ inches wide and 75 inches long, providing kids with extra space. Nonetheless, how to know if your child is ready for an adult-size bed depends on their individual growth.
If your toddler is able to climb out of their crib, they’re ready to make the transition to a twin mattress. Climbing over the guardrails poses a safety risk for your child.
Moreover, upgrading your child to an adult-size bed can facilitate potty training, as it makes it easier for them to get in and out of bed in a hurry.
As your child grows into a teenager, they’re going to need more space, literally and figuratively. Generally, a full-size mattress is appropriate for children once they reach around 8 or 10. However, if you notice your child has hit a sudden growth spurt, you may need to buy a mattress for them sooner. During puberty, adolescent girls grow an average of 2 to 3 inches a year, and adolescent boys grow an average of 3.5 inches a year.
A standard full-size mattress is approximately 54 inches by 75 inches. It can meet the needs of growing teens or even adult couples. According to the Sleep Foundation, a full-size mattress is appropriate for teenagers and adults under 6 feet tall. When you’re shopping for a new mattress for your preteen, also note how much space their pillow will take on the mattress—usually 18–20 inches. The best full-size mattress for kids is one that will give them plenty of room to stretch out and grow.
For adults and children alike, transitions in life can feel overwhelming. Upgrading your child to an adult-size mattress can instigate some bedtime challenges, but it’s a necessary step in their development. Before you buy a mattress, be realistic with your expectations. Even if your child is resistant at first, this doesn’t mean that he or she isn’t ready for an adult-size bed.
No matter your child’s age, it’s important to be patient with them as they adjust. For many children, getting a new bed means getting a new sibling, which can be twice the shock. Remind your child how proud you are of their growth, and give them the reassurance they need.
As you prepare your baby’s crib, safety comes first. Crib mattresses should be fitted snugly inside the frame to prevent any risk of entrapment or suffocation. Although many people prefer soft mattresses, firm crib mattresses are the safest option for babies.
Parents should also avoid filling their baby’s crib with stuffed animals and blankets. A hanging mobile is a great alternative for parents who want to soothe or entertain their baby as the baby falls asleep.
To make the jump from a kid’s mattress to an adult mattress easier, introduce your toddler to their new bed during naptimes. Rather than changing to a single bed overnight, this will allow your child to become familiar with their new mattress. Parents can also purchase a nightlight for their children, which may lessen nighttime anxiety.
If you’re worried your child might fall out of bed, low-profile box frames and platforms are a great option to keep kids’ mattresses close to the ground. Parents can also make a soft pallet alongside their child’s new bed for a cushioned fall. For the first couple of months, you can also place the mattress directly on the floor.
Also consider letting your child pick out their own mattress and bedding. Whether you buy a mattress online or shop in person, let your kiddo weigh in about his or her preferences. If they feel like they have ownership over their new bed, they’re more likely to be excited about the change. The best twin mattress for kids is one that will suit all their personal needs as they grow.
Your adolescent may be excited when you tell them that you’re planning to buy them a mattress. Although the transition might be seamless at this age, it’s essential for your growing child to practice proper sleep hygiene so they can get the maximum benefit from their new mattress. The Sleep Foundation, for instance, recommends limiting the use of electronics and avoiding caffeine before bed.
As your child approaches their teenage years, they may want to stay up late or fall asleep on the couch while watching TV. It’s OK to allow them to bend the rules occasionally, but it’s important to establish a bedtime routine. Keep in mind that children often mimic their parents’ bedtime habits, so make sure you’re setting a good example for your child to follow. Help them recognize that a good night’s sleep on a quality mattress will contribute to their comfort, security, and healthy growth.
Picking out the best mattress for kids goes beyond simply knowing if your child is ready for an adult-size mattress. A mattress’s material will determine its durability, firmness, and breathability.
It’s no surprise that higher-quality materials will last longer and provide more support. Even if your plan is to buy a mattress online, there are several affordable options on the market. More importantly, knowing what options are available will help you find a mattress that suits your child’s needs.
Innerspring, or coil, mattresses are by far the most common type of kids’ mattresses. They also tend to be the most affordable. As a general rule, innerspring mattresses are the best fit for young children.
The amount and shape of coils in the mattress vary. Typically, the more coils, the more support the mattress will provide. For extra plushness, parents can purchase a mattress pad for their kids.
Memory foam mattresses are relatively new to the market, the first one becoming commercially available in 1991. Even though memory foam is somewhat novel, it makes for a soft mattress that cradles its sleeper.
Other benefits of memory foam mattresses include body contouring, additional cushioning, and motion isolation. Memory foam mattresses are an ideal fit for older children or teenagers that are restless sleepers or side sleepers.
Latex mattresses are more buoyant than memory foam mattresses but also provide body contouring.
Additionally, latex mattresses are great for children suffering from allergies. Latex is naturally hypoallergenic, as it is resistant to mildew, mold, and dust mites. And according to the Sleep Foundation, latex mattresses rate the highest for longevity, lasting an average of 7.5–8.5 years.
Another option is a hybrid mattress. For support, it combines innersprings and either memory foam or latex materials. Innerspring mattresses are the most common, but hybrid mattresses are becoming increasingly popular.
Although the materials of hybrid mattresses vary, they all provide body support and pressure point relief. For kids who are hot sleepers, hybrid mattresses may be a good fit because the materials are breathable.
Before buying a mattress, there a few other considerations that will help you, the parent, determine the best twin- or full-size mattress for your child. Some families need to pass down mattresses from one sibling to another, and other families may have a child with special needs.
There are plenty of ways to customize your kid’s mattress, no matter what their needs are. Some of these considerations may not be relevant for every family, but they are worth noting.
For large families, durability is one of the primary factors in buying a mattress. Although it may seem more economical to purchase a mattress made with low-quality materials, it will wear out faster over time. A well-made mattress should last an average of 7–10 years.
Think of your kid’s mattress as an investment. If you are hoping to pass down a mattress from sibling to sibling, it might pay off in the long run to opt for a mattress made with higher-quality materials.
When selecting a mattress for a child with special needs, parents may prioritize certain features of a mattress over others. For example, a child with epilepsy may require additional padding or a softer mattress.
Accessories such as guardrails or adjustable bed frames with wheels can further customize the features of your mattress. To know what’s best for your child, make sure to consult with a medical professional first.
Making the step from a crib mattress to a twin, or from a twin to a full, can seem intimidating for you and your child. Some general rules of thumb can guide you, but there isn’t a hard-and-fast rule for knowing if your child is ready for an adult-size bed. Ultimately, you know your child and their needs best.
With the largest selection of mattresses in the region, Mattress World Northwest prides itself on its expertise and top-notch customer service. Once you decide it’s time to upgrade your child to an adult mattress, call or stop by one of our showrooms, where you’ll find a team of sleep specialists ready to assist you in finding the perfect mattress for your child.