Autum Daylight Saving and Sleep

How do I prepare my kids for the clocks going back an hour?

So it’s that time of year again where we are soon to gain an hour’s sleep thanks to Daylight Saving! Hooray! Except you’re a parent and that means you don’t, right?

When the clocks go back, it means that what was a 6am wake is now 5am and nobody likes to start their day at that time do they?! Here are my tips to help prepare!

What can we do to help our little ones transition smoothly to the new time?

Starting a few days in advance, shift your routine by 5-20 minutes depending on how sensitive your child is to changes. Move naps later by 15/20 minutes later every couple of days until you have made up the hour by Saturday!

What the clocks going back an hour is likely to mean is that children who are used to waking at 6am will actually start waking at 5am. 

Some families will be absolutely fine with this and will just adjust to the new timings over the next few days.

Broad spectrum daylight is one of the best ways of regulating our circadian rhythm. Get your little one out and about in daylight as much as possible. As soon as you get up, get all the lights on to kick start the day!

Exercise is also sleep’s friend, kids need loads of exercise to tire them out, if the weather is too bad to get outside, try some big body play in the early evening to help expel some energy.

Food is another driver of the circadian rhythm so by moving meal times back, you can help your little one get used to the new time! If necessary give an extra little snack to tide them over until the next meal time.

The bedtime routine is a really important part of helping your little one to sleep well.

For children over 8 or 9 months, you should spend around 45 minutes doing some calming activities, getting ready for bed and doing stories. 

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Do you need more personalised advice?

If you’re worried about what will happen beyond the clocks changing, maybe sleep is completely out of the window already and you need some help. Take a look at my Sleep Coaching Packages for a range of affordable options to get some hands on support. You can book a FREE 15 minute consultation with me first, just click on the link below and book online.