A Local Child Sleep Consultant’s Tips on Preparing for Daylight Savings Time


Doesn’t it feel like just yesterday we were turning the clocks forward and getting ready for summer? Now, winter is around the corner, and the end of Daylight Saving Time (DST) is here! On Sunday November 4, the clocks will move back by one hour. Shouldn’t this be a good thing for most adults? Who doesn’t love an extra hour of sleep??

This isn’t always the case though as a parent! Any disruption to our little one’s sleep patterns can be tough on mom, but there are a few tricks to make the end of DST as seamless as possible. Renee Wasserman is a local mom and certified infant and child sleep consultant who owns SleepyHead Solutions! Below she shares her expert tips for helping your kiddos navigating the time change. 

Tips for everyone

  • Spend lots of time outdoors: Physical activity will help ensure that your little one is tuckered out in time for naps and bedtime. Natural light is one of the best ways to reset our internal clocks.
  • Keep the routine consistent: Continue with your calm and predictable bedtime routine so your little one knows exactly what to expect. Sunday, November 4th, is probably not the night to have your kids stay up late or invite guests over to the house. 
  • Be sure your child’s sleep environment is ideal: Cave-like darkness and white noise will make a big difference. Consider using an OK to wake clock for your children (toddler age and older) that lights up when it is time for their day to start.
  • Keep them well rested: With any change to schedule or routine, the more rested your little one can be leading up to the change, the more successful the transition will be.  Spend time now getting naps and night sleep in order so your little one is not overtired. A well-rested sleeper will handle this transition much more smoothly than an overtired child!
  • Lighting: For the first week or two after DST ends, keep the lights a bit dimmer for the first hour or so after waking in the morning and the lights a bit brighter for the last hour of the day. This will help reset your child’s internal clock to the new time.

Tips for the less sensitive baby or child

  • Go with the flow. There is no need to prepare your child for the time change. Within a few days his body will adjust. Come Sunday, adjust the entire day to the new time including naps, bedtime, and meals. Within a few days his body will adjust.

Tips for those children who have some difficulty with sleep transitions

  • Start the transition to the new time several days before the end of DST.  Shift the bedtime later by 15 minutes every two days leading up to November 4th. Be sure to adjust the entire day (naps, bedtime, and meals) and not just sleep times.  By Sunday, your little one’s body will already be on the way to adjusting to the new time.

Tips for making Sunday as smooth as possible

  • Adjust the entire day to the new time including wake-up, naps, bedtime, and meals.
  • If your child wakes early, do your best to keep him in his crib or bed until his regular wake-time.  Delaying his exposure to natural light will help reset his internal clock.
  • If necessary, you can meet half way for naptime. For example, if your little one naps at 9 am, you can put him down at 8:30 am for the first day while he adjusts to the new time. The rest of the day will follow suit.

Have realistic expectations

  • If your children easily adjust to the time change, you may be those lucky parents who get an extra hour of sleep.  Most of you, however, should expect that your children will wake for the day up to an hour earlier until their bodies have adjusted to the new time.  It can take anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks for your little one’s internal clock to reset to the new time.  As with all sleep training, the most important thing is for Mom and Dad to approach this transition with patience, confidence, and consistency. 


Renee Wasserman, owner of SleepyHead Solutions, is a certified infant and child sleep consultant, and, in addition, holds a Masters in Public Heath and is a Physical Therapist with more than 15 years of experience. With her experiences in both the health care field and those that come with a being a mom to 3 girls (ages 11, 13, and 14), she discovered her passion for children’s sleep issues and founded SleepyHead Solutions in 2013. As a Family Sleep Institute certified infant and child sleep consultant, Renee empowers parents to teach their children to become healthy sleepers. Based in St. Louis, MO, she works with local families as well as families throughout the country and internationally. Renee offers many services including phone, email, Skype/FaceTime, and in person consultations to solve a child’s sleep challenges as well as to help parents set their newborns on the right track toward a healthy sleep foundation.  You can contact Renee via her website, as well as on Instagram, and Facebook.