For many, the clocks going forward signal the start of lighter nights and summer just around the corner. As a parent, this is not what I think of when I think of the clocks going forward on 26th March 2017 (GMT)! For us parents, the clocks going back are often accompanied by some bedtime struggles and early morning starts due to the lighter mornings! When the clocks go forward at the end of the month we want to help you minimise the potential disruption to your baby’s sleep and routine.
Here are our top tips for preparing and adjusting your baby’s routine for the clock change:
- Think time. Don’t confuse yourself thinking about new time/old time. On the morning of the change just think time and start the day as close to 7am as possible.
- Bring bedtime earlier. You can either do this by making bedtime earlier by 10mins each day in the week leading up to the clocks change (younger babies). Or you can simply put your child to bed 30-60 minutes earlier on Saturday night. For babies still napping in the afternoon try to reduce their nap by 20-30minutes.
- Bright and early mornings. Although your baby will be waking at 7am as the mornings get lighter this can cause some early morning waking. Make sure that you use a black out blind to reduce any light streaming through the window and use a gro clock for older babies to help explain the change.
- It can take a few days to adjust to the time change but until then avoid getting into any bad habits like bringing them into bed with you, dawn feeds or starting the day at 6am. Longer term this could lead to bigger sleep issues!
- Adjusting their body clock. A baby has no concept of time so having a routine will help them adjust their body clocks. Using light and darkness can help make the adjustment – use bright lights when they wake up as this produces the hormone cortisol and keep things darker at bedtime which aids melatonin production. It may take a few days for them to adjust completely but be consistent and stick to their timings.
Gemma at Baby Tech Support
2nd March 2017