Sleep Struggles Part 1: Daylight Savings Time

Written by: Michele Berman

It might feel like the holiday season just passed, but guess what? The end of Daylight Savings Time (Sunday March 10th at 2am) is only a few weeks away. While “springing ahead” is a sign that warmer days are approaching, if you have young children, it may also be a sign of difficult nights to come.

An hour of sleep probably does not seem like such a big deal to you, but it has a major effect on little ones. While some kids may be tired, lethargic and irritable as a result of the change to their sleep schedules, others might have a difficult time falling or staying asleep at night.

Luckily, there are many smart steps you can take to prepare for the end of Daylight Savings Time.

Recently, we worked with child sleep consultant Janeen Hayward, of Swellbeing Parent Resource, to pull together a list of our favorite tips to smoothly navigate the spring forward time changes.

Here they are:

  • Begin altering sleep schedules now.Beginning a couple weeks before the end of Daylight Savings Time, move your child’s bedtime back by a few minutes each night until you have reached that 60-minute mark. Doing so helps children adjust gradually to the time change and get accustomed to their new bedtimes little by little.
  • Create (and stick to) a bedtime routine. Kids catch on quickly to changes in routine. To make sure bedtime stays as predictable as possible, try to follow the same bedtime ritual each night regardless of time changes. For example, if you first put on pajamas, then brush teeth and then read books one night, make sure to follow the same routine the next.
  • Install blackout shades.  For children with sleep schedules that are impacted by the presence or absence of outdoor light, blackout shades are a must. As an added bonus for city parents, these shades also do a great job blocking out city and street lights. They can be found at almost any home improvement store in a variety of different designs.
  • Use a clock with visual cues:  We may be partial, but we think the ZAZOO KiDS photo clock is a great tool for managing sleep schedules as Daylight Savings Time comes to a close. Our clocks use visual cues to indicate sleep and wake times for children, and will help your kids stay on a sleep schedule despite the time change.

NEWS: We’re offering a 20% discount and free shipping on all ZAZOO online purchases to NPN readers through the end of Daylight Savings Time. To redeem yours, simply visit us at zazookids.com and use the code “NPN20” at checkout.

Now NPN parents, we’d love to know…how are you managing the end of Daylight Savings Time in your household?

Want more tips for family sleep, health and fun from ZAZOO KiDS? Check out our blog here, follow us on Twitter or like us on Facebook!

Posted on February 19, 2013 at 10:26 AM