How to Soundproof a Baby’s Room (Tips for Apartments)
There’s no denying that babies are precious miracles. They’re so cute and innocent. Naturally, you want to protect them and provide the best environment for them, at any cost. Well, it may be a struggle sometimes, especially if you live in an apartment. You constantly have to deal with thin walls and noisy neighbors.
Now that I’ve mentioned what a gift having a child is, I can also mention how difficult babies can be when they’re cranky or crying. We all know it, and we might as well face the facts; their sleeping schedule and overall well-being is now our #1 priority.
Many parents have to deal with this problem on a daily basis. At one point, I found myself practically hovering over my baby all night just to make sure it sleeps soundly through the night. Nevermind the fact that I had slept for a total of 5 hours all week. Thankfully, I snapped out of that phase, and here’s how I soundproofed my baby’s room.
It may seem like a lot of work at first, but trust me, it can be done. Moreover, it HAS to be done. I mean, babies are sensitive creatures, so it really doesn’t matter how noisy or quiet your neighbors are. Every sound is a potential “threat”. But, since you can’t build extra walls in your rented apartment, what can you do?
Well, moms and dads, it’s your lucky day! I’m here to give you all the tips and tricks in the book that will help keep your baby happy. And, needless to say, they’ll also keep you happy.
First, let’s start with simple tips.
The very first thing you should do is to take a look at your baby’s room. Does it have any furniture in it, apart from the crib? Are there any stuffed animals or other toys in the room? If the answer is NO, then you’ve got some rearranging to do!
- Add a shelf or two, and put as many stuffed animals on it as you can. Your baby won’t mind the colorful toys in the least.
- If you’ve already placed the crib against a shared wall, move it away. It’s better to keep it on the other side of the room.
- Check what is on the other side of walls. If there are noisy appliances (like TVs, computers) up against the wall, consider moving them if you can.
- Add a rocking chair or a comfy armchair. Even a sofa will do the trick.
- Dressers and armoires are also a good idea if they fit in with the decor.
- A bookcase is also a great addition to the nursery! Put it against the wall for a better effect.
Don’t worry, it’s a common misconception that a baby’s room should be clutter-free. After all, they spend most of their time inside the crib. But the emptier the room, the more background noise it will pick up, and the louder the echo will be. So trust me, the more cluttered the room, the better.
2. Add Carpeting
Most apartments have hardwood floors. Since hardwood floors have a smooth surface, it’s obvious that sound bounces off of them easily, which causes a horrible echo. All the noise from upstairs and downstairs is amplified. So, adding a carpet is a MUST.
Throw rugs are ok, but they won’t cover enough space. Unless you want to buy a ton of them. Instead, you should buy a rug that will cover the majority of the floor. Additionally, you should look for a nice wool rug, instead of one made of cotton. A wool rug will provide better sound-insulation than a flat-woven rug. So, you won’t have to worry about tiptoeing each time you go in to check on your little angel.
Also, once your baby is old enough to crawl around the room, the floor will be warm and soft.
To learn about more ways you can soundproof your floor, click on the link.
3. Decorate Your Walls
There are a number of great things you can use to decorate the walls and soundproof them at the same time:
- Hang large canvas art prints.
- Create works of art with your other children’s help. This way they can have a hand in creating your baby’s new space.
- Find some pretty fabric paintings that will also add to the decor.
- Decorative quilts are great for nurseries. You can finally display your grandmother’s handmade quilt that’s been in the attic for so long.
- Thick wallpaper can also be helpful.
- If you want to keep it simple, you can hang large room divider curtains along the walls.
Remember, the thicker the material, and the more space it covers, the better. So, artwork and wallpaper can help a little, but quilts and curtains will provide more coverage.
Also, if you have windows in the nursery, it goes without saying-curtains will do wonders when soundproofing the room.
4. Add Soundproof Wall and Ceiling Panels
Don’t dismiss this idea just because it sounds like it’s way too expensive or complicated. There are a lot of soundproof panels to choose from, but to help you narrow down your search, I highly recommend the 12-piece pack that you can get for a cheap price on Amazon. They come in an assortment of colors, so why not have some fun and create a unique wall design?
The Superdense Soundproofing Acoustic Panels, on the other hand, are a bit more expensive, but they’re also amazing. Especially because you can mount them to your nursery walls in a matter of minutes, all you need is a tape or blu-tack.
Don’t worry, you don’t have to be a genius to get the job done. However, if you think you need more information, check the article about the best acoustic panels.
5. Soundproof Your Baby Room Doors
It’s a well-known fact that most apartment doors are hollow and tattered. After all, you’re not the first family that’s lived in that apartment. Also, since you might need a permit to replace a door (if they allow it at all), you’re going to be stuck with the door you’ve got. But do not worry. There’s a simple solution that will help soundproof your baby room doors.
Amazon has some soundproofing/weatherproofing kits that will help you seal your doors. The best one is the Kanzzy Weatherstripping Door Kit that easily seals up doors and even windows. In addition to keeping the outdoor noise level to an absolute minimum, your baby will also be warm and cozy at all times.
If you would like to go the extra mile, why not add mass to your doors with soundproof blankets (guide). One of my top choices is the US Cargo Moving Blanket that you can purchase on Amazon. It really makes a difference, so definitely try it out!
The best thing is that you can take them off after they are not needed anymore, or use them in another room. But keep in mind, they need to hang against a flat surface to be the most effective.
TIP: To find out if your nursery door is leaking sound, try this experiment. Have your partner or a friend stand on the other side of a closed door, then try to hold a conversation. You may be surprised at how easy it will be to hear each other. Additionally, you can knock on the door and see how it sounds – hollow or solid.
6. Soundproof Your Baby Room Windows
As much noise as there is inside the building, there’s definitely more noise outside. You can’t control traffic and weather conditions, but you CAN control the amount of noise that leaks into your baby’s room.
Go for some noise reducing curtains (read full guide). They will minimize the amount of outdoor noise, and will also keep the street lights from interfering with your child’s sleep patterns. Add some soundproof strips to the equation, and you’re golden!
Remember, the more area they cover, the better. These Nicetown Soundproof Curtains are 96 inches long which means they go from ceiling to floor. They are made of thick and plushy velvet material that proves to be an excellent sound absorber. But not only are they effective, they also come in different colors so it won’t be hard matching them to other decor and furniture.
Another great solution is DIY window plugs. Actually, they are perfect for apartments, as you can plug them when your baby wants peace and silence, and then simply remove them afterward. The best thing about DIY window plugs is that they are really easy to build, in fact, all you need is a couple inexpensive materials and basic tools. If you want to find out what exactly is needed and what are the steps, then click on the link above.
Lastly, if you’re interested in more tips for soundproofing baby room windows, this article will help you: How to Soundproof a Window (Cheap Ways to Do It Yourself).
7. Replace "Bad" Noise with "Good" Noise
Many parents have this false misconception that the baby room has to be completely quiet; however, not all noise is bad for the baby. The studies have proved that the so-called white noise can actually have a calming and soothing effect on your baby. If you have never heard of it before, white noise refers to a type of noise that contains many frequencies of equal intensities (for example the sound of a fan or air conditioner).
Nowadays, it looks like there are hundreds of different white noise machines out there on the market, so finding the right one can be frustrating. I prefer those that are designed specifically for babies and come with various unique features. Like this Sleep Sheep Sound Machine that plays 8 different sounds and melodies, and at the same time resembles a toy that I’m sure every baby would love.
Why Should You Soundproof the Baby’s Room?
Where do I even begin? There are a number of reasons why soundproofing your baby’s room is important.
For your baby
Let’s start with the most obvious reason – your baby’s well-being.
Babies cry. Well, babies cry a lot. They do this for a million different reasons: hunger, sleepiness, fear, etc. Face it, they’re a handful. But they’re your handful now. And you want to keep your child as happy as possible. However, that’s not always up to you. You could keep your baby well fed, clean and happy all day, but if you live in a noisy environment, you’re going to have problems. You can’t keep the whole building quiet, just like you can’t hold your breath every time your child falls asleep.
For this reason, you should soundproof your baby’s room as soon as possible. Even before the little guy or girl is born.
Furthermore, it’s a well-known fact that persistent, repetitive noise can have a harmful long-term effect on your baby’s brain. Even if it’s just noise from the television, if your baby is continuously subjected to some form of noise, it could permanently alter their development. And we all want our babies to grow up to be the best they can be.
For your neighbors
The next reason why you should soundproof your baby’s room is that you have neighbors. To you, your child is priority numero uno. Your whole world revolves around it, and you constantly worry about whether it’s happy and healthy. But as far as your neighbors are concerned – they have their own problems to worry about.
You can’t expect them to tiptoe around every second of the day, and to whisper so as not to wake your baby.
Finally, don’t forget about one more thing. You have a life, a job, and you need to sleep (eventually). Not only that, but you need to be able to move around your apartment at some point, talk to your spouse, maybe watch some television once in a while.
Ultimately, DIY soundproofing your baby’s room is something that will benefit both your baby and you. So, don’t put it off. It’s simple, and if you just follow these tips, you’ll have a happy, healthy baby, grateful neighbors, and you’ll get some well-deserved rest as well!