There is no set time limit for how long a baby can sleep in a pack n play. Despite the fact that the majority of playpens are similar in their maximum weight and height requirements, there are some differences. Therefore, the most important thing is to study the product’s specifications so you know exactly what weight and height it can take.
As to the number of hours your baby can spend in the pack and play, there are no limits at all. You can use it as a primary sleeping place until your baby grows too big for the playard.
Pack and Play Maximum Height and Weight Limits
The majority of play yard models can grow with the baby. Usually, they have an infant bassinet that can hold babies up to 15 lbs. The best pack’ play itself can be used by toddlers up to 30 lbs or 35’’ in height. The product’s instructions will list the maximum weight and height and contain a note of “whichever comes first”.
However, you need to understand that while developmental milestones are similar, each baby is unique. Therefore, you need to look beyond the weight or height of your little one in order to determine if the playpen is a safe sleeping space for them.
Because of this, you need to stop using an infant bassinet in the pack n play as soon as your baby learns to roll over or pull themselves up. Bassinets are shallow and once your baby learns how to do this, they will be at risk of falling out. At this point, it won’t matter if they meet the maximum weight limits or if you have a “heavy-duty” bassinet that can hold babies up to 20 lbs instead of the average 15 lbs. Once your little one knows how to pull up, the bassinet is no longer safe.
At that point, you should move them so they can sleep in the playpen. It will remain safe for much longer, but you might consider adding another mattress or replacing the original. Playpen mattresses are often of subpar quality.
However, your playard will stop being safe for the baby to sleep in as soon as they learn to climb. When this happens, you should stop using the playard completely, or at least only use it as a place for playing while the child gets constant supervision.
Note that a video baby monitor isn’t an acceptable safety measure in this case. Even if you see that your baby is trying to climb up right away, there is no guarantee you’ll make it to them in time.
Therefore, you should monitor how active your baby is and what they are capable of doing as well as consider their height and weight when leaving them to sleep in a pack and play.
While the baby’s age is one of the factors you should take into account, it’s a very minor one. Children develop at their own pace and their growth is affected by many factors, so you shouldn’t rely on the age limits listed in the playpen manufacturer’s instructions.