If there is anyone that dislikes a disruption in their little one’s schedule, it’s me. So when daylight savings time comes around, it’s absolutely dreadful. I remember I used to love the time of year when we would “fall back” because I always took advantage of that extra hour of sleep. And then I had kids and the extra hour of sleep was non-existent and I was waking up in the early morning hours of 5am.
Luckily over time, I started to figure out a way that I could get my little one adjusted to the time change so that she wasn’t waking me up early in the morning and I could at least attempt to get that extra hour of sleep. I’ll admit it does take a little bit of planning and preparation and maybe a little bit of staying up past their bedtime, but it is so worth it in the end. With the preparation for daylight savings time, it no longer becomes a moment of dread, but rather one that everyone in the family can learn to love.
Check out my tips for ways that I have prepared by baby for the time change after the jump!
Start Early 1 of 5The time change doesn't occur until early Sunday morning. To get my girls used to the new schedule I always try to start getting them ready a couple of days before the actual time change. This way when they won't wake me up really early on Sunday morning, but will already be somewhat adjusted to the new time because we have been practicing for a couple of days. I usually always start on the Thursday or Friday before the time change.
Start Slowly 2 of 5We "fall back" this time of year which means that we set our clocks back an hour. If you choose to try to get your little one on an adjusted schedule ahead of time, don't go for the full hour right away. I always start with making naps around 15-30 minutes later. Then at bedtime I do the same. The next night I make naps and bedtime 30-45 minutes later depending on how the day went. This gradual transition helps and isn't such a drastic change on her daily schedule.
Keep Your Routine 3 of 5Although you might be slightly adjusting the time they fall asleep during the day and at night, you are not changing their routine throughout the day. If you feed them before you put them down for a nap, do the same thing, just at the adjusted time. Try to make your entire routine throughout the day either 15-30 minutes later (whatever you are trying that day) so that it will be similar to what you will expect on Sunday when the time actually does change. Both of my girls have always thrived off of a routine because they always know what to expect next. It helps especially when it comes to sleep. Both girls have the same routine night after night before they go to bed. Because of this, most nights we have no issues with them falling asleep and sleeping through the night.
Be Consistent 4 of 5I like to start adjusting my girls a couple days before the time change, but that is the method that works best for me. For fall, that means that they are staying up a little bit later than they usually do at night. I am one that loves to have "me time" at night and with our adjusted schedule, that means that my time has to wait a little bit. The important thing for the few days that I am trying to get them on the new schedule is that I am consistent. That requires a little bit of planning on my part. Dinner has to be a little bit later, I have to try to work around our already busy schedule, but the most important thing I try to do is stick with it. Because once I do, the reward is always worth it.
Be Patient 5 of 5If your gradual plan doesn't work right away, don't worry. Sometimes baby's internal clocks are just set for a certain time. They will get used to the new time eventually. It might mean a couple early mornings for you, but it is only temporary.
More from Lauren on Baby’s First Year:
Read more from Lauren at her personal blog, A Mommy in the City, where she chronicles her life living in New York City with a suburban mentality. For more updates, follow Lauren on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram! Check out more of Lauren’s Babble posts at Being Pregnant and Baby’s First Year.
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