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According to multiple product reviews, a lot of modern pack and play yards are not only great entertainment areas but can be used for sleeping as well. Babies, as well as their parents, simply love the opportunities these great devices provide since their functionality is smartly combined with the best materials and the newest technologies in baby care. If you’re thinking of skipping the crib, a pack n play yard can provide a great sleeping environment for your kid.
The best pack and play yards offer parents and their babies a lot more than just an area for sleeping or playing. As many reviews state, these items usually come with the same level of comfort as many cribs do while their safety and convenience rate seem much higher. In addition, a wide range of extra features such as digital melody consoles or soothing nightlights will make sure even the most tempted parents are satisfied with the pack and play yard for babies.
Since the modern market offers dozens of manufacturers and hundreds of models, choosing the best pack and play yard for your baby might be quite challenging. Before you go through numerous customer reviews, here’s what you should always keep in mind:
Since pack and play yards for babies have recently become subject to Consumer Product Safety Commission, they are now one of the best choices for reducing the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. Instead of baby-proofing your home, consider investing into a pack and play yard that will allow you being sure of your kid’s safety, rest, and entertainment.
- Early learning.
While the newborns learn through playing, the earlier your kid begins to play, the better. Even a basic pack n play yard will offer added toys and entertainments for your baby that will not only provide fun to the bundle of joy but can also perform an educational function helping to develop motor and association skills.
According to many reviews, a lot of parents mistakenly believe pack n play yards are the best for day time use only. However, American pediatricians generally consider them a safe and suitable environment for night sleeping as well. Besides, a lot of models offer additional features such as storages for baby necessities, removable changing tables, canopies against sunlight, and much more.
As many reviews state, keeping a kid close to the parents while they’re playing or sleeping greatly depends on how portable its immediate environment is. Since the majority of pack n plays are foldable and lightweight, they surely are one of the best options for parents who’re often on the go as well as fit those who simply want to move freely around their homes while keeping the baby close and having it within sight at all times.
A pack and play yard for playing and sleeping is a piece of equipment both parents and babies can benefit from. While this kids gear makes parenting much easier for adults, it also provides one of the best environments for children who get lots of fun and entertainment due to many additional features such as vibrating mattresses, various toys, and calming melodies.
Reviews of the Best Pack ‘n Play Yards for Sleeping
Choosing the best pack n play yard for sleeping is never an easy task even if you’re an avid parent. The producers constantly come up with newly-designed models featuring novelties and innovations. Hopefully, our reviews of the top five pack and play yards will help you make up your mind when looking for the best option for your baby.
This pack and play yard by Graco has got plenty of positive feedback from customers. According to many reviews, it provides a safe and comfortable shelter for your child to play and sleep while its comparatively small size (40 x 28,5 x 33 inches) allows easy transporting for travelers as well as trouble-free moving around the house.
Many parents chose this model as the best piece of baby equipment due to its sturdiness, secure attachments, and high functionality. The removable napper is one of the best options for the newly born allowing adults to keep the sleeping child around while the diaper change is now quick and comfortable due to the reversible station.
Whether you want to have your kid with you while barbecuing in the backyard or provide a comfortable place to sleep and play when traveling, the Graco pack and play yard is always the best choice. According to many customer reviews, lots of parents have opted for this model due to its additional features that are quite useful. Those include mess-resistant fabrics, padded floor, and a removable full-sized bassinet.
To transit to toddler play yard mode or to fold the pack and play, you can use the hassle-free one-button push hold system that makes closing the play yard quick and easy. A convenient carrying bag allows for comfy travel and storage so you and your baby will benefit from the simple convenience of this great model designed with parents in mind.
- Best for home and outdoor uses
- Reversible napper/changer
- Resistant fabrics
- Perfect for both sleeping and playing
- Comfy carry bag
- Fits both newborns and toddlers
- Soft padded flooring
- Does not differ much from the basic Graco model (though the price is higher)
- No mattress support in the bassinet
- The seams are visible in the corners inside the pack and play yard
Plenty of customer reviews prove that this pack and play is one of the best for your baby to sleep due to a smartly-designed inclined sleeper with padded cushion for neck and head support and soft hypoallergenic material for better comfort. Both the pad and the headrest are machine washable which is great for busy moms while the sleeper itself is easy to set up or remove that is really useful if you’re on the go and need to fold the pack and play yard quickly.
Along with one of the best values for the money, the pack n play offers a foldable compact grab-and-go vinyl changer pad that is stored in one of the spacious mesh pockets and features a built-in wipes dispenser which is especially convenient if you do a lot of traveling. This portable play yard with the comfy padded floor that can be removed for cleaning is easy to fold, takes little space, and is really lightweight (only 21.2 pounds).
Although the majority of users chose this model to keep their babies in during travels, the numerous customer reviews of this item prove that this pack n play yard is also a great item for every-day use at home. Its luxurious look will nicely fit any interior while its functionality allows keeping all the baby necessities handy either you are inside or outside your home.
While the sleeper in this pack and play yard has been designed to fit the newborns best, the play yard itself can still be used by toddlers once the sleeper is removed. This normally happens when the babies can sit up, which is approximately at the age of six months.
- Smartly-designed removable sleeper
- Durable fabrics and sturdy construction
- Small weight
- Takes little space
- Foldable vinyl changer with built-in wipes dispenser
- Modern design
- Sleeper fits infants only
- No music console
- Not the best play yard mattress quality
- Cannot be installed on wet surfaces
The numerous product reviews with positive feedback on this item serve to prove that this pack and play yard is one of the best options for parents seeking to provide versatility and comfort for their babies’ sleep and play areas. The item features a revolutionary day2night system by Graco that offers multiple nap spots due to a smart combination of the bedroom bassinet and the pack and play yard.
The bedroom bassinet for night time sleep is placed on a sturdy stand if you want to have it near your bed throughout the night. Additionally, the stand includes handy storage bins underneath to keep the diapers or other essentials close by. Once the bassinet is removed, it can be comfortably carried around the house by two comfy handles or can be placed in the play yard bassinet that will allow keeping your baby close throughout the day.
A pack and play yard for day time naps comes with a removable cushioned diaper that can be easily flipped out of the way when you’re not using it providing access to a large storage compartment that helps keep things organized. The bassinet is removable so you will use the playard after the baby outgrows it. In addition, this pack and play yard is equipped with a portable mp3 speaker system and a two-speed vibration setting.
While many reviews state that this pack and play yard is a bit too bulky and is not the best choice for travelers, all elements fold for compact storage and can be nicely packed into a comfy carry bag. Besides, you can always fold and move the play yard outside your house if you want to have it there on one of those sunny days.
- All-in-one solution
- Lots of storage areas
- Stylish design
- Multiple sleeping options for the baby
- Vibrating and sound consoles
- Too bulky and heavy
- High price
- You need to take the whole liner out of the portable bassinet if you need to wash it
If you’re looking for the best pack and play yard for your child to sleep in, be sure to pay your attention to this great product by Baby Trend that has got plenty of positive reviews from many customers. Not only does it provide high-quality fabrics that are easy to wash and will be soft and gentle against your child’s skin, it also comes with plenty of useful features that can make parenting much easier and comfy.
The removable bassinet is equipped with a nice canopy helping to shade your kid against excessive sunlight and a couple of plush toys to keep the junior busy from time to time. On one of the longer sides, the pack and play yard features a spacious dock station with several differently-sized useful mesh pockets to keep the baby essentials handy while one of the shorter sides offers a big pocket with Velcro closure that is the best for larger items.
One of the best features pointed out by many parents in their reviews is a possibility to move the pack n play easily around the house due large wheels with brakes. In case you need to move it in tight spaces, you can always fold it due to a comfy one-hand locking mechanism.
- Machine-washable fabrics
- Wheels with brakes for sturdiness
- Easy folding system
- Convenient changing table
- Lots of storage
- The bassinet can’t be removed separately
This pack and play yard is one of the best options for parents seeking for both a nice playing and sleeping facility for their babies. One of the unique features this Graco model provides is a deluxe hamper offering lots of storage space to keep the clothes, diapers, and other baby essentials handy.
There’re many positive parent reviews on this model due to its napper station that is nicely-styled and made of extra-soft fabrics to cuddle your baby in the best possible way. The full-size bassinet is a perfect place for day sleep while the transformation from the night time to play mode is seamless due to the one-push-button fold system.
If you’re traveling a lot, this pack n play is the best choice due to its reasonable weight (up to 28 pounds) and a compact travel bag with comfortable shoulder-carry straps. Whether you want to use this pack and play yard as the baby’s primary sleeping location or simply need a portable item for your travel experiences, the Graco Pack N Play Elite will always provide lots of opportunities both for parents and their babies.
- Hassle-free folding system
- Fits newborns and toddlers
- Lots of positive parent reviews
- Large changing table
- One of the best combos of bassinet, crib, and changing table
- Changing table cannot be flipped
- The side compartment is a bit flimsy
The Importance of Peaceful Sleep for Your Baby
As a parent, you have to ensure that your precious baby gets restful sleep every day. Studies show that it’s imperative for maintaining the healthy cognitive and physical development of the child.
However, every parent knows that sometimes getting your baby to sleep is nearly impossible. Nights like this are a challenge for both of you and it’s essential that you don’t let the stress get to you when trying to calm your child and put them back to sleep. Do not forget that your stress and irritation will agitate the baby and they will only become more distressed.
Instead, focus on using different calming tricks to help the little one relax and fall asleep again. Once you are over this episode, start working together to create a routine that will help your baby sleep peacefully every night. You should start creating a consistent bedtime routine as early as the child turns four months old.
However, before you start doing this, you need to observe your baby carefully so you can identify their simple habits that indicate the baby is about to fall asleep. You also need to pay attention to what makes them aggravated and distressed. If such irritants cannot be avoided, you’ll need to develop a bedtime routine that will work around them to soothe the child.
Note that in many cases, the fussiness and crying are caused by teething. If this is what’s happening to your baby, you should use soothing teething toys to reduce their discomfort. Offer support and care that will soothe the baby’s distress and help them bear through the pain.
7 Most Effective Tips for Helping Your Baby Sleep
Use the Lights Wisely
Exposure to sunlight and generally staying in well-lit rooms during the day is important for the baby’s health and development. However, to help your child develop a healthy circadian rhythm, you need to teach them to fall asleep in the darkness.
To induce sleepiness, install dimmers on the lights in your house and turn the light down gradually as the bedtime approaches. Note that if your baby wakes too early due to bright sunlight, install blackout drapes to control the level of light in the room.
If you choose to use a nightlight in the baby’s room, be sure to pick the dimmest one you can find. Install it away from the crib in a position where the light won’t be aligned with the child’s eyes.
When your baby wakes up, soothe them in their room but don’t turn on the light. Changing the level of brightness will put the child’s brain into ‘alert mode’. Therefore, putting them back to sleep will become harder still.
Learn the Art of Perfect Timing
Babies who soothe themselves to sleep are less likely to wake up and start fussing. However, developing this habit is very difficult. The trick to achieving this is to put your baby to bed when they are getting drowsy but aren’t asleep yet.
To learn what ‘the right moment’ is you need to observe how your baby transitions from wakefulness into sleep. Look carefully and break the process into stages varying by the degree of sleepiness. 10 on this scale is when your baby is asleep. The best time to put a drowsy child to bed and leave them to fall asleep on their own is when they hit 7-8 on their personal sleepiness scale.
Note that as you are developing the self-soothing habit, you shouldn’t rush to the child’s side the moment you hear their waking noises through a baby monitor. Instead, wait for a few minutes to see if they will settle down on their own.
Feed Your Baby Late at Night
If your baby consistently wakes up in the middle of the night, a late-night feeding might help. You’ll need to wake them up sometime around 10 p.m. Therefore, you’ll need to be careful and quiet to prevent agitating the child.
Keep the lights dim and don’t make eye contact as this makes the baby alert. Instead, you should keep your movements gentle so the little one only wakes when the nipple is right in front of them. Put the baby back in bed right away. Do not burp.
Try Some Massage
If your baby has trouble relaxing, give them a gentle calming massage. You can use lavender oil as it has a soothing effect and can help the child fall asleep. In fact, consider using lavender-scented bath products before bed to get your baby nice and relaxed.
Please note that some babies become more active after a massage. If yours is one of them, skip to the next tip.
Give the Child a Security Object
A soft fuzzy teddy bear or hand-knitted baby blanket are not merely objects that make cute props for baby pictures. These are items that can help your child sleep better because they provide a sense of security and familiarity. Such security objects will relieve the child’s distress over being separated from you. You’ll need to carry the item with you for a time to make it smell like you.
Note that you should never give your baby any object in bed until they are at least 6-7 months old. Even then be careful and choose something safe for this age.
Use White Noise
It doesn’t matter whether you buy a white noise generator or use a phone app or simply turn on a fan at a low setting to create the soothing hum. The point is to fill your nursery with soothing background noise, which can block out outside sounds without waking the baby.
Use this technique if you live in a noisy neighborhood, have thin walls, or are traveling.
When Desperate, Try Controlled Crying
Controlled crying is a sleep training method that can be hard on both yourself and the child. However, it’s rather effective when practiced correctly. The method consists of leaving your baby to cry for short periods of time so they learn to calm down on their own.
Start with leaving for two minutes, then going back and using your usual soothing techniques. Gradually, work up the ‘crying breaks’ to 10 minutes.