Before having children, that end of summer time change meant an extra, wonderful hour of sleep in the weekend.  When you are a parent, setting the clocks back does not necessarily mean an extra hour of sleep.  Adjusting your baby’s sleep schedule to daylight savings time is not always easy, it can cause early morning wake ups and the dreaded bedtime battle of trying to somehow find a way to keep your little one awake that extra hour without becoming overtired.  How can we make this an easier transition? In this fall edition, I have explained a few ways that you can prepare for the sometimes dreaded time change and hopefully make it an easier and smooth transition.

For Seattle Washington, our clocks will move back one hour on Sunday November 4th, 2018 at 2:00 AM.  This means that sunrise and sunset will now be one hour earlier on November 5th , 2018.  One of the biggest adjustments for babies will be the evening routine and trying to keep your little one up later to avoid a ridiculously early wake up in the morning.  To help keep your baby’s schedule on track, here are some tips to help try to make the transition easier for your child:

  • Blackout Blinds or Curtains – These are going to be your best friend!!  I encourage you to block out as much natural light as possible and the reason I recommend complete darkness for sleep is because Melatonin, the sleep hormone, is only produced in darkness.  This will ensure your baby has the ability to settle easily and nap well throughout the day.  This also helps to guard against early morning waking.
  • White Noise – White noise is extremely effective to help block out any outside noises such as birds, traffic or general household noises.It needs to be quite loud to be effective, like a vacuum cleaner or shower faucet, and this needs to play continuously for the duration of your babies naps and overnight sleep. I recommend using a constant sound like heavy rain or static.
  • Consistent Wind down/Bedtime Routine – Keep your wind down routine consistent and don’t rush it, babies do not understand what time it is therefore, if you are consistent with your bedtime routine, this should be an easy transition to keeping your baby’s schedule on track.  Allow 10-15 minutes of wind down time in a dimly lit room, books, songs,cuddle and lights out into the crib or bed.

 

This is easiest to explain with a 7am-7pm day however, if you are working on a different schedule, just adjust your timings accordingly.

If you are a planner and want minimal change on the day the clocks move forward, here is a table to help gradually adjust your baby’s schedule before daylight savings begins.

 

MondayWake up 15 minutes laterOffer feeds and naps 15 minutes later than usualBed time 15 minutes later
TuesdaySame as MondayOffer naps and feeds 15 minutes later than usualSame as Monday
WednesdayWake up 30 minutes laterOffer feeds and naps 30 minutes later than usualBed time 30 minutes later
ThursdaySame as WednesdayOffer naps and feeds 30 minutes later than usualSame as Wednesday
FridayWake up 45 minutes laterOffer naps and feeds 45 minutes later than usualBed time 45 minutes later
SaturdaySame as FridayOffer naps and feed 45 minutes later than usualSame as Friday
SundayWake up 7am (8am old time)Nap and feed times back to normal times on new clock time!7pm bed time again (8pm old time)

 

This is easiest to explain with a 7am-7pm day however, if you are working on a different schedule, just adjust your timings accordingly.

If you prefer to change the schedule once the clocks have changed, here is a table to follow to gradually bring back your baby’s schedule to the appropriate time, this helps to keep them on track in regards to naps and overnight sleep.

MondayWake up 15 minutes later at 6.15amOffer naps and feeds 15 minutes laterBed time 6.15 pm instead of 6pm
TuesdaySame as MondayOffer naps and feeds 15 minutes laterSame as Monday
WednesdayWake up time 6.30 amOffer naps and feeds 30 minutes laterBed time 6.30pm
ThursdaySame as WednesdayOffer naps and feed 30 minutes laterSame as Wednesday
FridayWake up at to 6.45 amOffer naps and feeds 45 minutes laterBed time 6.45pm
SaturdaySame as FridayOffer naps and feed 45 minutes laterSame as Friday
Sunday7.00 am wake up!Nap and feed times have been pushed forward an hour7pm bed time

 

Have another question about your baby, toddler or young child?  Call me for a FREE 15 minute consultation, 206-747-1710.  I also work with clients Internationally and throughout the USA!

If you would like more information or could benefit from a personalized plan and full support, please do not hesitate to contact me!  I look forward to helping the whole family get the much needed sleep you deserve!

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