daylight saving winter

Daylight Saving and Baby Sleep, The Winter Edition

Feb 20, 2023
1 min read

Daylight saving in the some parts of the Southern Hemisphere is finishing soon. The mornings are getting darker, which means you'll get an hour extra of sleep! Hooray!!!

But do we if we’ve got children? Will they naturally sleep longer too? Surely it can’t be that hard, just keep them up an hour later so they’re tired and sleep in longer. Nope sorry, it can take a good week or two for our children’s body clocks to adjust and if you’ve got a baby under 18 months, keeping them up an hour later for just one night will probably have the opposite effect and make them overtired, grumpy and they’ll sleep worse.

If your baby is already waking at 5.30 AM you definitely don’t want them to start waking at 4.30 AM!! So let’s get prepared to start changing your baby or toddler’s daytime naps in order to move their morning wake-up time over the course of a week.

The concept is quite simple; essentially every second day you move their first nap 15 minutes later than the usual time. You continue to run the rest of the day 15 minutes later as well with feeds and bedtime 15 minutes later, so by the end of the week your baby’s whole routine has shifted one hour later.

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For example if we prepare the week before (this is assuming you have a 7 PM bedtime):

Morning wakeAll naps and feeds/mealsBed time
Monday & Tuesday7.15 AM15 minutes later7.15 PM
Wednesday & Thursday7.30 AM30 minutes later7.30 PM
Friday & Saturday7.45 AM45 minutes later7.45 PM
Sunday8.00 AM!! (the new 7am)Continue as normal7.00 PM (the old 8pm)

If you are doing this after Daylight Savings has finished, adjust your little one’s sleep in this way:

Morning wakeAll naps and feeds/mealsBed time
Monday & Tuesday6.15 AM15 minutes later6.15 PM
Wednesday & Thursday6.30 AM30 minutes later6.30 PM
Friday & Saturday6.45 AM45 minutes later6.45 PM
Sunday7.00 AM!!Continue as normal7.00 PM

This shift in nap/bed times will be a lot easier if your baby/toddler is already in a good, predictable pattern for their day.  If you would like any help with structuring your child’s day in this way, please see our Sleep Programs for downloadable plans to guide you through your day.

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