Daylight saving time change: how it affects babies and children

Daylight saving time change: how it affects babies and children

With the arrival of spring also comes the change to summer time. Thus, at dawn from Saturday March 26 to Sunday 27 we will have to advance our clocks and at 02:00 it will be 03:00, gaining one more hour of light per day.

As this time change means sleeping one hour less and that the night comes later, the little ones can see their biorhythms affected. Therefore, we give you some tips to cope with it as best as possible until they get used to it again.

How does the time change affect babies and children?

Babies and children are especially susceptible to this time change that alters their wake-sleep rhythm , and can cause sleep disturbances, attention problems, irritability, anger, discouragement, tiredness … especially in the first hours of school.

While for adults it may be a slight imbalance on the first day, the Spanish Association of Pediatrics (AEP) reminds us that children’s biological clock may take several days and even a week to adjust.

To this is added a disorder typical of this time of year, spring asthenia , a temporary disorder characterized by a state of apathy and generalized tiredness, sleep problems and even muscle pain and irritability.

How to help them cope with the time change

Explain the time change

If your child is old enough to understand the notion of time , explain to him what the change of time consists of with words according to his level of understanding. Check out more interesting articles on our PM Blog.

This will help you understand why when they wake up it will be more at night than before, but the afternoons will be longer.

Prepare for the new schedule

The most convenient thing is that you start a few days before, bringing forward the time to eat, study and go to bed about 15 minutes , so that the change is gradual.

The problem comes when Monday arrives, if the child goes to school… because at night it will be difficult for him to fall asleep earlier and the next day there is no choice but to pay attention to the alarm clock with the new time. So, have a good collection of books to read and a lot of patience to relax the child.

The first mornings will be hard, but at night they will be more tired and it is likely that they will quickly fall into the arms of Morpheus. You will see that in two or three days, at most a week, everything returns to normal.

Relaxing routines before bed

It will be harder for them to fall asleep, so we can resort to relaxing routines before going to bed , such as a warm bath, a light dinner and one -or several- goodnight stories.

Respect the hours of sleep

It is important to comply with the sleep recommendations according to age , since proper rest has a positive impact on the child’s development . Thus, pediatricians recommend that children rest a minimum of 10 hours a day, a figure that rises to 11 or 12 hours if we are talking about preschool children.

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