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Daylight Savings Time and your Baby


Guest Post by Christina Gantcher, sleep expert for Gerber

“Fall back to Sleep”

On Sunday November 1st we will adjust our clocks back one hour for Daylight Savings Time. That means sunlight during our afternoons gets shorter and gives us a bit more daylight in the early morning. It also means that our children’s sleep schedules need to alter, as well. Parents often ask me how to do this, especially if their child has been getting up before 6:00 am.

You can help your child adjust to the change by several methods:

Option1: Go cold turkey. When the change comes up just put your child to bed at the new time, which will be later than usual, and don’t let them start the day until at least 6:00 am the next day. If you have a toddler you can use a developmentally appropriate clock to let them know it’s not morning time. Within 2 or 3 days your child will most likely be on the new schedule.

Option 2: Gradually adjust bedtime a few days before the change. 2 days ahead of the time change, move bedtime later by 30 minutes. Then, when the change happens, bedtime is already at the new adjusted time on the clock. Your child may be tired but do your best to keep them up until that new time.

Make sure your child is well napped during the change or the day leading up to the change so that they are starting with a full “tank” of sleep. This is very important and can help especially if early rising has been a problem. If your child is up too early, be consistent by waiting until 6:00 am to let them start the day. Then, do a “dramatic wake up” and pronounce the morning by turning on the lights and letting in natural light, too.

Enjoy autumn!

Christina Gantcher is one of the experts at Gerber. Appointments can be scheduled to chat with Christina (as well as the nutrition/lactation consultant) at https://www.gerber.com/experts. People can schedule a free 15-minute phone consultation with any of the Gerber experts.

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