Daylight Saving Time begins on Sunday, March 11th at 2am.
We will be turning the clocks forward by one hour. Depending on how sensitive your child is, it can certainly throw off a sleep routine parents may have worked hard to establish.
The Certified Child Sleep Consultants at SleepWell Baby are sharing five tips to help get you through this transition and get ready for spring:
1. Nap Time
Instead of immediately making the switch to new naptimes, split the difference. Adjust the morning and afternoon naps by 30 minutes to begin with and add another 30 minutes by the third day. By the end of the week your little one should easily switch over to the new schedule.
2. Internal Clock
Help your little one reset her body clock by exposing her to light upon waking and keeping her room dark when it’s time to sleep. Sleep is regulated by our circadian rhythm (our body’s internal clock) and that clock is regulated by light and darkness. Exposing your little one to light and darkness that is consistent with the new clock will speed up the change.
3. Change Bedtime
If bedtime is usually 7:00 PM, put your child to bed at 7:30 PM for the first three days following the time change. Remember that 7:30 feels like 6:30 to your child. Go back to a 7:00 PM bedtime on the fourth day. It will take about a week for your child’s body to get used to this adjustment.
4. Teach Time
Consider taking this opportunity to teach pre-school children to read a clock. If you have children over the age of two, this is an ideal time to boost independence by adding a digital clock to their sleep environment. Spend time teaching them the numbers six and seven. Draw, colour, trace, cut, or make up a little story about Sleepy Six and SleepWell Special Seven. Be creative to get your children interested in the numbers.
5. Keep Consistent
Remember that children thrive when parents provide a structured environment and dealing with the time change is no different. Keeping your everyday routines consistent will help your little one make the adjustment. Structure your day with regular playtimes, mealtimes and pre-sleep routines all according to the new time.