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Time to Spring Forward

It’s almost that time again- time to spring forward. This means we lose an hour of sleep at 2 am on Sunday March 12th (so technically Saturday night). This is sure to throw anyone’s schedule off, but can be especially daunting for parents. After all, we lose enough sleep as it is! There are a few different ways you can go about tackling this time.

  1. Do Nothing- That’s right! You don‘t have to change your routine at all if you don‘t want to. This time change tends to be a little easier to adapt to, especially for newborns, who aren’t on much of a routine yet, and toddlers, who tend to be more flexible. You can just continue with your normal routine on Sunday and your little one will adapt over the next few days. They may be a little extra tired at first, but they will adjust quickly.

  2. Gradually Shift- If baby is on multiple naps per day (between about 4-18 months old) then this may be the best option! This also works well for highly sensitive children. Starting a few days before the time change, start gradually waking baby earlier, by about 15 minute increments per day. Their schedule will slowly adjust and they will be all set by the time the clocks move forward!

  3. Make a Quick Change- If you completely forgot about daylight savings, that’s ok! You can make changes quickly if needed (such as for a little one going to daycare or preschool who needs to be on a certain schedule). You can shift your schedule by about 20-30 minutes earlier on either both Saturday and Sunday, or Sunday and Monday in order to adjust to the new time. This may take baby just a minute to get used to, but they will adjust!

A few things to keep in mind:

  • It will be lighter in the evenings now, so you may want to consider some room darkening curtains if your little one needs a dark room to sleep at bedtime

  • Expose baby (and yourself!) to natural light early in the morning. This will help your circadian rhythm adjust to the new routine

  • Keep your routines consistent to make for a smoother transition with the time change. Your little one relies on their routines to know when things are happening

We tend to go with the do nothing approach and just play it by ear. Since I mainly stay home with Easton, we are able to be a little bit more flexible with this. He is also generally pretty easy-going with changes, so he adapts pretty well. Try not to stress about the time change too much! I know it can be a daunting time for parents when you aren’t sure how your little one will handle the change, but know that everyone will adapt. Baby may just be a little extra sleepy or fussy for a few days, but they will quickly catch on! Share your tips and tricks for tackling the time change in the comments!

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