Spring is in the air. Many of us are looking forward to the extra hour of daylight. Even though we are looking forward to the extra light, many of us are not looking forward to the time change. Here are a few tips to help you and your child spring forward with success.
1. Make sure to black out your child’s room
If you haven’t done this already, it would be helpful to add blackout shades or curtains before time springs forward. Having a cave-like room will help promote your child’s natural melatonin production.
2. Do Nothing
Like in the fall, some children do better with the shift in time AFTER the time changes. By waiting until after the time change, it gives you a chance to see where your child is. Some will naturally align with the new time. Others will be off slightly which can be addressed with tips 4 and 5.
3. Gradually adjust the time
For those children who are a bit more sensitive, slowly adjusting their schedules prior to the time change can be helpful. Shifting their schedule by 15 minutes each day 3 days prior to the time change will help them acclimate much quicker to the shift in time.
4. Stick to the schedule
You all know how much I love a good routine, right? Well, so does your child. It helps them keep time (think of it as them having their very own watch). It’s our inclination to let them sleep in after the time change but it can throw off their little clocks – and with the time change, that can be a lot for their little bodies to handle.
Stick to their schedule as much as possible the next few days/weeks so they can adjust well to the time change.
5. Expose them to the sun
This is my favorite tip of all. The sun is such an amazing resource. Exposing your child (and yourself for that matter) first thing in the morning helps to set our circadian rhythms for the day. This in turn helps us build our melatonin stores for the day as well.
What have you found works best for your family during spring forward?