The clocks go forward on Sunday 25 March, so we’ve called on paediatric sleep expert and Baby Elegance brand ambassador Lucy Wolfe to share her top tips on how to combat any difficulties the time change might cause
1. Do your best to prepare your child for this transition by ensuring that they are well rested in the run up to DST (daylight saving time). Pay specific attention to day time sleep and fill this need as much as possible.
2. Make sure that you have blackout blinds and a healthy sleep friendly environment to help with going to sleep and to avoid unnecessary early rising.
3. Consider moving your child’s schedule ahead by 15 minutes every day from the Wednesday before the time change. Adjust meals and naps times and of course their morning wake-time accordingly so that by Sunday you’ll be in sync with the new time on the clock.
4. If you prefer: do nothing until the day of the change, waking your child by 7.30am “new time” that morning and then follow your daily routine, addressing meals, naps and bedtime as you always do but offering a level of flexibility – possibly splitting the difference between the old time and the new time. This means that your child is potentially going to bed 30 minutes to one hour earlier than normal; they may struggle as their inner-clock may resist this, but within 3-7 days their system will adjust and your regular timetable will run just fine.
5. Bear in mind that we do not really want the time change to achieve anything, except that by the end of the week we are on the same time schedule that we have always been on prior to the change. Allowing the new time to make bedtime later or creating a later wake time rarely has a positive result, often resulting in night time activity and decreased nap durations by day.
6. Remember to wake by 7.30am “new time” each day so that the internal body clock is not disrupting your nap and bedtime rhythm.
7. Treat any disruptions with consistency so that you don’t create any long term sleep difficulties during this transition.