How to prepare baby for daylight savings

March 24, 2016

The clocks go forward an hour on Sunday, which will make the mornings darker and the evenings longer. If you’ve just got your baby used to a successful sleep schedule you might be a bit worried about how daylight savings will affect your routine.

When bedtime comes around at 7pm you'll probably find that your baby is still as fresh as a daisy because their bodies believe it to be 6pm! They might also be a little crankier and extra fussy as their body changes its natural rhythms to meet the time change over the course of the next week or so.

Here are a few tips to help you prepare for the hour change so that your baby can adjust seamlessly:

  1. Start to put your baby to bed about 10-15 minutes earlier than usual so that they can slowly get used to going to sleep at an earlier time. They’ll probably be wide awake at the beginning because their body will still be working on ‘old time’.
  2. Darken the room by using blackout blinds or thicker curtains so that your baby isn’t affected by the light outside. In the winter it’s easier to put babies to sleep because the early darkness triggers the release of the sleep hormone melatonin, which helps them relax and feel drowsy. It’s harder in the spring time because the extra light makes baby think there’s still plenty of time for play.
  3. Some parents like to follow baby’s cues and go with the flow for a few days, allowing their little one to adjust on their own. After a few days of grumpiness your baby will get used to the change and so will you.
  4. Be flexible for the first week or so after the clocks go forward to give your baby time to transition between the old and new time. The days will seem very long and it’s easy to feel tired and be grumpy when your baby wants to stay awake and all you want is a break from parenting. Give yourself a license to enjoy the extra time with your baby because before you know it the clocks will go back again in the winter!

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