BEDTIME SURVIVAL GUIDE when the Clocks Change
Kate Cohen is a Certified Children’s Sleep Consultant and a member of the Association of Professional Sleep Consultants. She works with families around Hertfordshire and beyond to advise and help tackle all things sleep.
Did you know the clocks are changing on 25th March? I obviously keep an eye on it, but I’m always surprised at how quickly it comes around! In many ways changing to British Summer Time is great, brighter mornings, lighter evenings, but for those of us with children it can be a bit of a scary thought! Are they going to wake up even earlier? How am I ever going to get them to go to be at a decent time!
To help you out, here are my top 5 tips to survive the clocks changing! As with most things I talk about I try to keep it nice and simple and fairly easy to implement:
1. Don’t act to quickly!: Delay changing the clocks in your house until the morning of the clock change, that way you can start the day as per normal and enjoy that satisfaction of knowing that you all slept in a bit later (even though you didn’t!)
2. Get them nice and tired: On the day of the time change get your child out and about to wear them about a bit more than usual, get yourself to a Gymboree session, head to the park or go for a walk to get some fresh air.
3. Push bedtime back: From the 25th put your child to bed 30 mins later than normal so 7:30pm rather than 7pm. Continue this for the next 3 days and then on the 4th night switch back to 7pm as they should by then have switch to the new time.
4. Don’t forget the naps: If your child is napping do the same, just put each nap 30 mins later than normal for 3 days and then revert back.
5. Check your child’s windows!: Remember that it’s now going to be lighter in the morning so have a look at the window coverings in the room and if there is any light getting in consider putting up a black out blind, to avoid early rising creeping in!
I often find that parents often dread this time of year, but if you follow this plan, your child’s sleep and yours shouldn’t be interrupted too much. Remember that any upsets should be temporary and he change in the clocks should take no longer than a week to settle down, leaving you time to enjoy the lighter mornings and evenings in no time!
And the good news is that because we are springing forward, this shift in time should be easier for your little ones to adjust to and if you have a really early riser it may actually even help to fix that issue!
So there you have it, if you follow these tips you should eliminate that dread creeping in and transfer into British Summer Time easily.
If you have any sleep issues big or small then I’m here to help, I run workshops and I also work with families 1 on 1 to offer bespoke support on sleep issues with children aged between 0 – 6 yrs old. If you would like to know more about the work I do or to book a free 15 min call to discuss anything sleep related then have a look here www.sleeptimebaby.co.uk