Does daylight savings cause stress on your family as it does on mine? I have a very active toddler who sleeps through the night, and I do not want his sleep to get messed up! There are ways to help your little one adjust to daylight savings.
How to adjust your baby’s sleep for Spring Forward- Daylight Savings
Option #1: Go with it
Meaning do not do anything! Forget the time has changed and go on with your day.
If you have a baby that is waking up at 7:00 am and going to sleep at 7:00 pm, then move it so that they are waking up at 8:00 am and going to sleep at 8:00 pm on Saturday. Wow! That was easy, right?
This may not work if you must be out of the house at a particular time and can’t have the baby “sleep in.”
This may not be a good option if bedtime is after 8:00 pm. Little ones tend to get a second wind because they are so tired they will not fall asleep. If this is you, then I suggest following option #2.
Option #2: Gradually move bedtime
This is how I help my little one adjust. Not everyone can do this, depending on their schedule during the week. You are going to start this on Tuesday before daylight savings. If your little one’s bedtime is 7:00 pm, you will move bedtime to 6:50 pm. You will then wake your little one up at 6:50 am on Wednesday (waking your little one will be hard, but it will make the transition easier in the end). Continue pushing bedtime by 10 minutes each night and wake up your little one 10 minutes each morning. By Sunday, you will be back to 7:00 am-7:00 pm.
This option takes some time, but gradual change helps children adjust easier. This way is not always feasible, depending on your family’s schedule.
For naps, I would also like you to adjust 10 minutes. This way, your little one is sticking to their wake windows.
There is one more option that I recommend depending on what works for your family.
Option #3: Change over the weekend
On Sunday, wake your little one at 7:30 am (this will feel earlier to them). Then put them to sleep 30 minutes earlier. It will feel later for your little one. Adjust naps as needed so you are still following your little one’s wake windows. You can gradually adjust throughout the week if you need.
Here are tips to help make the adjustment as easy as possible
Get out and play outside when it is light. This will prepare your little one’s body for the day and make it easier for them to sleep for nap and bedtime.
For nap and bedtime, the room needs to be pitch black. I recommend these blackout curtains https://sleepoutcurtains.com.
A sheet or even black construction paper on the windows will work, but make sure it is black in the room. I always tell my clients you should not be able to see their hands in front of their faces.
Stick to your routine. During this transition, be extra cautious about your routine. Your little one will already be able to tell something is different, but keeping your routines the same will help with the transition. If you do not have a routine, here is one that I recommend
Bedtime routine: bath, diaper, lotion, pjs, sleep sack, book, bottle/ cup of milk, cuddles, lay in the crib drowsy.
Have patience! This is a change for your little one but also for you. Everyone will be extra tired. Follow your little one’s sleepy cues. If they need a 45-minute cat nap, then let them have one. Watch for their wake windows so your little one doesn’t get too tired. This will make it harder for them to fall asleep.
If you still need additional help, I am here for you! I will give you 1:1 support with all my packages. If you are interested in my newborn package https://strugglestocuddles.com. I will help with wake windows, setting up your nursery, and giving you tips on creating healthy sleep habits.
If your little one is over four months or 12 lbs, I have three other options https://strugglestocuddles.com: basic, extended, and maximum support. Each of these comes with 1:1 support and daily check-ins through text or email. Each of these comes with a personalized sleep plan to help everyone get the sleep they needusing techniques that match your family’s philosophy.