I love this time of year.
It’s when the snow begins to melt, the flowers begin the bloom and the sun stays up a bit longer.
We can finally put on our favorite Spring outfits (yes, I love my Easter dresses), eat yummy barbecue and FINALLY have some fun outdoors.
However with all the fun March brings, when we “spring forward” I gets tons of calls from my clients wanting my tips to keep their child’s sleep schedule intact.
Let’s be honest. No one enjoys losing an hour of sleep. It takes our bodies awhile to adjust and I don’t know about you but I can be a little grumpy during the change.
The good news is the beginning of daylight savings time doesn’t have to be a struggle. You can transition your child easily to our new time and keep them sleeping through the night. With the 3 simple steps below, you’ll have your little one sleeping like a champ in no time.
Daylight Savings Time Begins at 2 a.m. on
Sunday, March 12, 2017
in the United States
Sunday, March 26, 2017 at 1 a.m. on
Here are my 3 favorite tips:
Option 1: Do nothing.
Parents with early risers, CELEBRATE! You don’t have to do a thing.
That 6 am wake will now be 7 am once the clocks change. Your child’s schedule will naturally adjust during the shift so you’re good to go.
It’s only to fair to tell you that if your little one has a super late bedtime which could be contributing to their early waking, you’ll need to adjust it. For example, if your child goes down at 9 pm allowing them to stay up until 10 probably isn’t an option. I highly suggest shifting their bedtime to prevent them from getting overtired.
Option 2: Stick to the routine.
If you like your current schedule, why change it? Once the clocks change, keep it in place.
If your child currently naps at 1 pm then continue to put them down at 1 pm once daylight savings time begins. With this method it’s key to understand that some kids have a hard time adjusting when we “lose” an hour.
For example, although the clock may read 1 pm, your child’s internal clock is telling him that it’s noon and too early for his nap. So many children will refuse to nap at 1 pm DST. However if you’re patiently diligent with your routine within 10 days your child should be fully adjusted.
Option 3: Gradually shift their schedule.
This is my favorite way to get kids ready for DST. It’s super easy to do and I’ve found it causes less disruption to their sleeping patterns during implementation.
Here’s your formula:
Current bedtime – 15 mins + Current Wake Time -15 mins =
New DST Sleep Time
Here’s an example:
Baby A currently goes down at 7 pm each night and wakes at 7 am each morning. Mom and Dad would like to keep Baby A on this same schedule when daylight savings time rolls around.
To help Baby A “spring forward”, 4 days before DST begins they would slowly begin adjusting her schedule in 15 minutes increments. On March 9, they would put her down at 6:45 pm and wake her at 6:45 am on March 10.
They would then put her to bed at 6:30 pm and wake her at 6:30 am on March 11. They would then put her to bed at 6:15 pm and wake her at 6:15 am on March 12.
The night of the 12th they would put her down at 6 pm, move the clocks forward an hour before they go to sleep and Baby A will wake up at 7 am DST the next morning. Voila! Daylight Savings Time Made Simple!
Whatever you choose to do (or not to do), daylight savings time is coming and I want you to be prepared. If your child had a hard time adjusting to the end of daylight savings time, be sure to go back and read my blog post about baby sleep environments.
In it I walk you step by step on how to create an environment for your child that encourages sleep. Now, I want to hear all about how your family transitions to DST.
Now in the comments below tell me, which option will you choose to get your baby ready for DST?
I look forward to hearing from you,