Let’s Fall Back Y’all!

It’s that time again. The days are shorter and Thanksgiving is just around the corner. You know what you need to do. Here’s our mayor, Beauregard P. Fibbs with a reminder.

Hello good people of Shady Pines. This Sunday November 6th at 2am, Daylight Savings Time ends and the clocks turn back one hour.  Some of you think this is a bonus. After all, you get that extra hour to sleep in.

But some parents in town tell me when you have young children, it’s just one more thing you have to navigate.

If you think about it, when the clock turns back one hour, what used to be 7:00am is now 6:00am.  So it’s lighter earlier in the morning and darker sooner in the evening. Are your kids are early risers? Well, they will probably rise even earlier. EEE-Gads!

To help get ahead of “Fall Back”, I’ve got 4 tips to help your child adjust to the end of Daylight Saving Time.

#1 Plan a Few Days Ahead

Start a few days ahead of time to get the family ready for change. Move your child’s entire daytime schedule  a bit. On Thursday morning, have breakfast ready 15 minutes later than normal, then naptime 15 minutes later and so on until the entire daytime schedule has been shifted.

If your kids normally go to bed at 7pm, they should be going to bed at 7:15pm.  Do the same thing the next day but move their schedule later another 15 minutes.  The gradual shift helps their internal clocks adjust. They will be less likely to wake an hour early on Sunday morning.

#2 Block The Morning Light

Make sure your child’s bedroom is really dark. In fact, consider using some blackout curtains so the new early morning light doesn’t wake your child.  Experts say by keeping the room dark you encourage the production of melatonin. With that one change you help them stay sleeping.

#3 Avoid Rushing In

If your kids wake earlier than you would like, try to leave them alone until the normal wake up time. This gives their internal clocks a chance to reset.  By leaving them a little longer than normal, you also give them the opportunity to go back to sleep.

That should help you, too!

#4 Expose Them to Plenty of Daylight

If you can, expose your child to plenty of bright light, especially in the early evening. When you do that, it will shift their clock. That makes it easier for them to fall asleep later and wake up later.

Something else to keep in mind. Try not to worry if your children aren’t making the shift as fast as you think they should.  Kids who are easy going when it comes to schedules may adjust in just a day or two.

Children who are more sleep sensitive may have more trouble adjusting. Be patient and consistent and before you know it your kids will be back on track.

This advice may also apply to your four-legged family members. Why Harold and Edna Sanders tell me when the time changes, they have their hands full with Boomer and Halley.

Those two critters are a caution most days. But when their routine is messed with, it can be a whole ‘nother layer of commotion!

So take it easy out there and let’s all FALL BACK TOGETHER.

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