While purchasing cribs for twins, you may have asked this question at least once — can twins sleep together?
Being blessed with twins means double the joy and, of course, double the efforts and the decisions. Every task has to be done twice, including purchasing cribs.
A crib is important for a baby since they spend most of their time there. You must look for the safest crib without compromising their comfort. However, the above question would still ponder you.
In this post, we help you with the answer to the question. We also share the advantages and limitations of twins sleeping in the same crib and the precautions to observe.
Can Twins Sleep In The Same Crib?
One grave concern about placing twins in the same crib is the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). It is best to talk to your pediatrician before choosing to let them sleep in one crib or separately.
A study suggests that co-bedding twins promotes self-regulation, sleep, and decreased crying without any apparent risk (1). As your babies are accustomed to being close to each other for nine months in the womb, they might sleep better and have fewer night wakings when they are put to sleep in one crib. However, it is important to follow the safety standards to avoid SIDS risk when the newborn twins are kept in one crib.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, infants should be put to sleep on their back (supine position), and care should be taken not to cover their faces (2). If you wish to place your twins in one bed, it is best to do it until they learn to roll over.
What Are The Benefits Of Putting Twins To Sleep Together?
There are quite a few benefits of putting your twins to sleep together, provided you follow necessary precautions to reduce the risk of SIDS.
- Taking care of them becomes easy.
As twins need twice the attention, having them both sleep in one place will make things easy for you. You can quickly attend to their needs without running from one place to another.
- They may keep each other warm.
When you put your twins together in a crib, the combined body temperature might help them stay warm and cozy. However, take care not to let them put their hands over each other’s faces.
- They may feel secure and comfortable
Having their twin in proximity might make them feel secure and comfortable, just like how they were in the womb. This may prevent frequent night awakenings.
Concerns Over Twins Sleeping Together
Although there are some benefits of twins sleeping together, there are a few limitations too.
- Each baby might develop different sleeping habits, and one might disturb the other.
- When twins sleep together, they tend to turn towards each other. This position is not safe for babies, as it increases the risk of SIDS.
- Once they grow older, they tend to move around the crib, and sharing a bed can restrict their movement. There is also the risk of poking or suffocating each other.
Talk to your pediatrician to find out the potential risks of placing your twins in one bed. However, if you follow the safety precautions, you can let them sleep together until six months.
Precautions To Take While Putting Twins Together In A Crib
If you have decided to put your twins to sleep in a crib following your doctor’s approval, take some of these precautions to ensure your babies have a safe sleep.
- Place the babies head to head in the crib, such that their heads are at the center of the cot, and the feet face one end of the cot. This will ensure they do not suffocate each other and give them enough space to lie down in a supine position.
- Make sure your babies are tucked in securely. If you cover them with blankets, ensure they are placed well below the shoulders.
- If you wish to divide the cot, use a fixed cot divider. Never use a pillow or a rolled-up blanket to separate the crib.
- Try to sync their feeding and sleep schedules, as it will help you catch enough sleep and make it easy to attend to your babies.
- Once your babies are past six months, it is advised to keep them in separate cots as it would give them space to move around comfortably. However, you can always opt for room sharing by placing them in separate cots.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Can we swaddle twins together?
No, twins should not be swaddled together. Twins may be co-bedded (sleep in the same cot), but swaddling should be done separately for each baby.
2. Do twins wake each other up?
Twins may wake each other up. In such cases, you may try putting your baby in separate cots. However, you may keep the two cots close so that your twins can see and touch each other (3).
The question of whether twins sleep together does not have a specific answer. It is a situational arrangement as every family is unique and has its preferences. Your decision to put your twins to sleep together or separately may depend on various factors, including their comfort and needs. If you think that your babies are comfortable sleeping together, ensure that all the necessary safety steps have been taken and make them sleep in a crib. After all, they share a special bond as their journey together began long ago in the womb.
- When you make twins sleep together, they feel warm, comfortable, and secure.
- Some common concerns may be increasing the risk of sudden infant death syndrome, developing different sleeping habits, etc.
- Consulting a doctor before letting your twins sleep together in a crib is ideal.
- Tucking them securely, putting the blanket below the shoulders, and not using a pillow to divide the crib are some precautions you may take.
2. Eve R. Colson, et al.; Factors Associated With Choice of Infant Sleep Position; Pediatrics (2017).
3. Twins and sleep; National Health Services, UK