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Prepare toddlers for the upcoming time change


One week in advance: prepare babies earlier for the time change
Late risers can look forward to the coming weekend: in the night from Saturday to Sunday, summer time ends and the clocks are reset an hour. The additional hour of sleep pleases most, but babies and toddlers in particular are struggling with the change. You should be prepared for it slowly.

Changing the time is a health burden
Every six months it happens again: the time change is just around the corner. On the night of October 30, the clocks are reset to winter time. The additional hour of sleep does not get everyone, however, but confuses the “inner clock” of many people and can lead to complaints such as headaches, poor concentration, dizziness, tiredness and sleep disorders. Babies and toddlers in particular can find the change difficult. Experts advise you to prepare them a few days in advance.

An hour of extra sleep
As the professional association of pediatricians (BVKJ) reports on its website "kinderaerzte-im-netz.de", babies and toddlers sometimes have to struggle with the change in time. If the clocks are reset one hour in the night from Saturday to Sunday, their usual sleep-wake rhythm changes abruptly.

According to the chairman of the German Society for Sleep Research and Sleep Medicine (DGSM), Alfred Wiater, the problem is more pronounced the younger the children are. Infants in the first six months of life, in particular, have problems when timing changes. You may then be less well-rested and more tired than usual. It can take up to a week for babies to get used to the time change.

For babies, start the clock change a week earlier
However, as Hans-Günter Weess, head of the sleep center at the Palatinate Clinic in Klingenmünster, explained, parents could make the change easier for the little ones by anticipating the time change.

With babies, you can start about a week before the changeover and put the little ones to bed ten minutes later every day. "With the time change, they go to bed at the normal time and get up at the normal time," explained Weess.

For toddlers, it is enough to start a few days before the time change - they can go to bed every day 15 minutes later.

Adjust meal times
But not only the times of going to bed and waking should be adjusted. According to Wiater, it is also about the daily routine, for example the meal times, which should also be shifted accordingly from day to day.

When the kids are a little older, the Saturday change of day can be a good time for generosity. Then parents can give in to the child who wants to stay up late. If the children sleep later, they usually wake up later. This also gives parents something of the gift hour.

Abolition of summer time
Since many people have considerable difficulties with the change of time and, moreover, the originally hoped-for benefits - energy savings through better use of daylight - have not been fulfilled, a large number of Germans are now in favor of abolishing summer time. Surveys showed that almost two thirds of the participants consider summer time to be unnecessary and would like to do away with it. (ad)

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