We’re gaining an hour of sleep! If only our babies were on board with this idea. Instead of the usual 6 am wake-up, you may find yourself up at 5 am! The end of daylight saving time means an adjustment to your baby’s sleep schedule is needed.
So, how can we make this transition easier for all of us?
Ways to deal with a time change.
There are a couple of ways to minimize late-bedtime battles and early morning cries, either go cold-turkey and hope for the best or try a gradual bedtime change. Just remember that a time change of only one hour can affect your baby’s sleep patterns for a few days.
- Stick to your normal schedule.
That’s right. If you’re lucky, and your baby naturally adjusts to sleeping changes easily, you can just jump to the new times and wait for him or her to transition. Just act like it’s a normal day and know that everything will be pushed back by one hour. However, you may find that your baby is struggling to make it to nap time or bedtime, but as their internal rhythms adjusts over a couple of days, this will get easier.
- Prepare Ahead of time.
Not all babies adjust to a time change easily. My suggestion is to prepare ahead of time and adjust your baby’s bedtime by 10 min every few days. If bedtime is usually 7 pm, push it back to 7:10 pm, then 7:20 pm, etc.
Even if you didn’t prepare ahead of the time change, you can still gradually adjust the time after the time change. Persistence and consistency are key as a time change messes things up for a few days, even for adults. Rest assured that you’ll find that your family’s schedule adjusts after a week or so.
Expectation during a Time Change
- Your baby’s bedtime will feel much later and the darker evenings will make it hard to keep your baby up to the usual bedtime. If you usually start dimming your lights before bedtime, try and do it a bit later each night.
- If your baby can’t hold out to the new nap time, that is okay. Let your baby sleep so that you can avoid an overtired child, which causes naptime to be a battle. However, be careful of letting your child’s last nap happen too late or close to bedtime as this will make bedtime all that much harder.
- Go easy on yourself and your child and take a deep breath. It is normal for this shift to take upwards of one week until everyone is back to their normal sleep schedule.
Similar to dealing with jetlag with your little one, more sleep is better than no sleep. A well-rested child deals with changes a lot easier. Overtiredness results in more crankiness and impatience from your baby and yourself.
If you’re struggling not only with the time change, but figuring out how to set your baby’s sleep routine, schedule a call. We’d love to help your family have more peaceful nights.
We want to know what you or your baby/child are struggling with so let’s chat! We bet we can help. Schedule your free, no-obligation 20-minute phone call to see if we are a good fit.