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Daylight Savings Ends

Joan Sleepytime | Oct 26, 2022

Daylight Savings Ends

 

It seems like there is always something happening that throws another hurdle at our parenting endeavors.  As if parenting isn’t difficult enough, let’s throw a big schedule change into the mix.

 

During the first few weeks of life we wait and try to shift our babies from thinking that they are vampires that sleep all day and are awake at night, to feeding through the day and sleeping at night. Then we wait for melatonin production to kick in after 3 months. After the most dreaded sleep regression at 4 months, we finally get babies that sleep a little deeper and longer. Then the magic of our baby safely rolling onto their tummy for sleep, ah bliss. 

 

Then this awful Daylight Savings Ending malarkey comes along that throws off all our schedules. Parents are thrown off schedule have to deal with cranky kids that are thrown off their schedule. At least we know what is going on, even if we don’t fully understand it. Babies and toddlers have no idea, all they know is what their body is telling them. Their need to be awake, fed or sleeping is because of their biological clock, not because of what they are told to do. 

 

It is nice to gain that extra hour and to have an extra hour in bed.  However, more than likely if you are a parent it has been a long time since you have had that pleasure.

 

Dealing with the clocks changing feels like jet lag. In the COVID era, it may be the closest thing to jet lag that we can get! I never thought that I would wish to be jet lagged again, it’s weird how COVID has shifted our priorities.

Research studies show that our bodies adjust better to going back in time, rather than going forward in time.  If you were flying long distance, your body has a more difficult time flying east (forward in time) than when it is flying west (back in time.)

 

Regardless of what you do in preparation for it, there will still be an adjustment.  Expect some crankiness, whether it is yourself or child.  The darkness of the seasons is known for a time to focus inward and care for yourself.  So do just that, do it with genuine care.  As much as you may want to adjust your family routine to the schedule, your kids may feel tired and hungry now at an earlier time.  Feeding them and allowing them to sleep, takes priority.

 

If your child typically sleeps well and doesn’t have a negative reaction to change, then go with the flow. Their new schedule will sort itself out within 1-3 days. 

 

If your child doesn’t sleep too well, doesn’t react well to change or wakes early then preparing for the time change will help shift their biological clocks. 

 

TO FALL BACK, WE SHIFT OUR SCHEDULE FORWARD in preparation

 

Preparation in 10 minute increments.

Tuesday before the time change, start scheduling your child’s day 10 mins later.  Remember that it also includes feeding times.

Instead of 7 am wake up, 7:30 am feed, 9 am nap …..

Try 7:10 am, 7:40 am feed, 9:10 am nap….

 

Wednesday

7:20 am, 7:50 am feed, 9:20 am nap…

By the time that Sunday rolls around, you will be on the new schedule.

 

Preparation in 15 minute increments.

Thursday before the time change, start scheduling your child’s day 15 mins later. Remember that it also includes feeding times.

7:15 wake up am, 7:45 am feed, 9:15 am nap…

7:30 am, 8:00 am, 9:30 am nap….

 

Preparation in 30 minute increments/split the difference.

Saturday 7:30 am wake up, 8:00 am feed, 9:30 am nap

Sunday 7:00 am wake up, 7:30 am feed, 9:00 am nap – New time.  Their schedule will be out of whack by 30 mins

 

Just go with the flow

Don’t do anything at all.

Aim for an activity in the morning.  Then keep the day low key for the second part of the day.  Don’t overdo things the next day, if possible.  A longer nap may help your child adjust to their new bedtime.

 

Products that may help:

Black out curtains

Sound machines

Melatonin (for temporary use with a doctor’s approval)

 

On the bright side or dark side (?!)

Enjoy the cooler temps, it’s great for snuggle time. 

Melatonin production kicks in during the darkness.

The original proposal of having a 2 hour time change wasn’t accepted!!

 

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