It is a topic of debate among parents as to which is harder: getting babies to eat or sleep. Regardless of the debate’s outcome, all parents agree that putting a baby to bed is a difficult task. It is hard enough to get one kid to sleep; imagine trying to get both of them to sleep when the babies are twins. But can twins sleep in the same crib safely?
Well, there is no yes or no answer to these questions. Even though NHS encourages putting two twins together in a single cot especially when they are small enough, it also provides the parents with guidelines to follow while doing so.
Can You Put Twins in The Same Crib?
There is no regulation or law book about child safety that states that you cannot put twins in one crib. The need for less space and the financial benefits of using baby cribs for twins encourage many parents to make this choice. But should twins sleep in the same crib? Well, just like everything else in the world, there are both health benefits and risks to having twins share a crib when it comes to their overall health.
What Are The Benefits of Twins Sleeping In The Same Crib?
Many doctors and scientists have found the benefits of putting the twins in the same crib or same cot. NHS, WebMD, etc have listed the advantages of twins sharing the same crib, some of which are discussed below.
Firstly, twin babies share the same womb for nine months. They are used to sharing a small space together, this is practically all they know. As a result, being in close proximity to each other brings them a sense of comfort. This sense of comfort and security is very necessary for the twins in a new atmosphere, especially just after they are born. And when the babies are relaxed, they can eat, nap, and have an overall good time. In this regard, keeping them in the same crib will help them stay happy and anxiety-free.
Secondly, human babies are one of the most helpless creatures on earth. They need constant care and support. If the babies are kept together in the newborn twin baby cribs, it becomes much easier for their primary caregiver to be able to provide them with the care and nursing they need in a more convenient way; this also reduces having to clean, maintain, or decorate multiple baby cribs.
Thirdly, during colder months their combined body heat will keep them warm and comfortable in the same crib. They will also have enough time to grow an early bonding between themselves. Also, a constant touch of human smell and touch keeps them from feeling lonely and scared. They also become good at entertaining each other and need less attention from their mother or caregiver.
Again, traveling with twins is no less than a nightmare. They feel uncomfortable in moving vehicles. As a result, they do not want to eat or sleep properly. Many children resort to crying and making tantrums the whole time they are in the car. In this regard, if the babies are used to sleeping in cribs for twin babies, your travel will be much less hassle-free, as they will be able to sleep in a twin travel crib without creating a fuss.
Some Risks and Solutions to Those Risks of Sharing Twin Baby Cribs for Twins
Firstly, in the first few weeks after birth, the babies remain swaddled most of the time. They do not move much, so there is very little risk of them hurting each other. However, as they start growing they start wiggling more and more and risk bumping or hurting each other. To address this issue you can get a crib divider for twins. With the twin crib separator, you will be able to use the same crib for your child for a longer period of time.
Secondly, SIDS or Sudden Infant Death Syndrome refers to the sudden and unexpected death of an apparently healthy baby. It is also known as “cot-death’’. According to NHS, In the UK, around 200 babies die suddenly and unexpectedly every year. Sometimes having twin babies in the same crib might result in accidental suffocating of one baby, and consequently SIDS. It is an important risk factor to be weary of while deciding to use one cot or crib for two babies.
Again, as the babies grow up, their individual personalities start to flourish. Even the most genetically identical twins have distinct eating and sleeping schedules. One might sleep without moving too much whereas the other might play at a full-on football match while sleeping. This might disturb the other’s sleep and rest schedule.
Another risk is that they will become excessively competitive and begin to fight with each other. As per Dr. Dina, there’s nothing wrong with giving the children their own space, especially as they get older. In addition, as they continue to develop, the space in the twin baby crib will continue to become smaller, making it uncomfortable for both of them to sleep there.
Should twins continue to share a crib even if it becomes too uncomfortable for one of them? The answer is no, and at that point, it might be time to consider upgrading them to a twin infant bed instead. This way, they will have more room to move around freely on their own. This is impertinent for their growth, both physical and mental, as such incidents could contribute to claustrophobia in the near future. Therefore, this issue needs to be dealt with delicacy.
To sum it up, can twins sleep in the same crib? The answer is yes, and often recommended by pediatricians due to this practice having many benefits. However, as primary caregivers, the parents have to maintain certain guidelines and keep the babies under close inspection. If they start showing signs of discomfort, it is advised that they immediately shift to using crib dividers or entirely new cribs to keep the babies in. At the end of the day, The main goal is to ensure that the twins can enjoy their lives as infants to the fullest in the most comfortable and relaxed environment.