Can you believe it – tonight marks the official kick-off for March Break in some areas of Ontario?!? It feels like this school year is flying by. I feel like I say that every year, but it seems to stand more and more as I continue to age.
Not only does this weekend mark the kick-off of March Break for my little ones, but it also marks the switch to Daylight Savings Time. A time that many parents dread.
Trust me when I say I get it. Going through time change semi-annually with little children can almost seem like a daunting task. So how do you survive what seems like the impossible?
I have some 8 tips for getting baby through Daylight Savings Time:
Slowly Shift Bedtime. In the days leading up to Daylight Saving Time, slowly shifting bedtime in 10 to 15 minute increments until baby is sleeping at their new time. This allows for your child to slowly adjust without making any sudden changes. For example, if bedtime is at 8PM, start the week prior to time change by shifting up bedtime by 15 minute increments every few days.
Stick With Routine. As Daylight Savings Time begins or ends it is more imperative than ever to stick with a bedtime schedule. A consistent bedtime routine has been proven to help
Eliminate Unnecessary Disruptions With The Right Overnight Diaper. Babies usually spend between 12 to 16 hours of each day asleep, and moisture or temperature change cause disruptions if baby is not wearing the right diaper. In fact, according to P&G, 35 percent of babies wet their diaper before they fall asleep. Babies pee on average 3-4 times per diaper at night and diapers need to be able to handle overnight wetness. Pampers’ diapers feature 12-hours of overnight dryness to keep baby dry, and asleep, no matter the time difference.
Dramatic Wake Up. For parents whose children are early risers due to the time change, try the “Dramatic Wake Up” – which goes as follows:
- When your child wakes up, comfort them until their actual wake-up time with the lights off and the room quiet.
- Leave the room for a full minute until baby’s wake up time arrives, then re-enter dramatically saying “Good Morning,” or by opening the curtains and turning on the lights.
Dramatic Wake Up helps teach your child the appropriate hour for being awake, rather than the time when you soothed them back to sleep.
Include More Pre-Naps in Baby’s Schedule. “A child that is well rested will transition more easily to a new schedule than a tired, cranky one,” says West. Adding an extra nap to baby’s schedule the week leading up to Daylight Saving Time will make the hour difference easier for you and your child.
Adjust Meals and Activities to the New Clock Time. As you spring forward an hour, so do all of baby’s other activities. In addition to shifting bedtime in 10 to 15 minute increments the week leading up to Daylight Saving Time, adjust meal time and other important activities as well as those count as important daytime markers for baby.
Expose Your Baby to Sunlight In The Morning. To reset your child’s circadian rhythms, expose them to sunlight after their new wake up time. A quick walk outside, opening of the blinds or playing near an open window will help their body transition to Daylight Saving Time.
Be Sympathetic. A young child going through time change may be highly irritable. In the days following the shift to or from Daylight Savings Time try to be a little more sympathetic and forgiving. Temper tantrums and irritability are to be expected. Time change will certainly cause short-term affects on a child’s mood. Trust me – I know. The important thing to know is these mood swings are short-term, and with a little compassion and sympathy your child will push through them fairly quickly.
improve a child’s sleeping habits.