How to help your baby sleep in the lighter months

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Parent putting baby in cot

Most of us look forward to the clocks going forward in spring and the promise of brighter mornings and long and light summer evenings.  

Unfortunately, the changes in light, as the summer gets closer, can play havoc with baby’s or toddler’s sleep routine.  

Fortunately there are a few things you can do to help them sleep in spring and summer – ensuring you all get the right amount of shut eye.   

Baby sleeping

Make it dark 

The sun has got its hat on, but you might not be shouting hip hip hooray if your toddler thinks it’s time to get up at 4.30am! To ensure they (and you) sleep a little longer, try to make their room as dark as possible. You could so by investing in some blackout curtains or a blackout blind. And the good news is you don’t have to shell out a fortune to find a solution that works. Instead of getting fitted or made to measure versions, you can find blackout blinds that are attached with Velcro or suction pads, making them easy to put up or down. You can also use blackout blinds for daytime naps.  

Clock it 

If your toddler is still waking up at the crack of dawn, consider purchasing a sleep clock. Most sleep “clocks” simply uses colours to visually cue your child’s brain that it’s time for sleep or it’s time to wake. They can be a helpful tool for toddler sleep at any time of the year.  

Children reading a bedtime story

Keep the peace  

Try to stick to your normal routine. You may wish to stay up later and enjoy the lighter evenings but this doesn’t mean your baby or toddler needs to. Keep their room peaceful and quiet at bedtime and a calm bath before not only signals to your baby that it's sleep time it also helps your baby produce a sleep hormone which in turn helps sleep. 

Baby asleep in cot

Stay cool 

The lighter evenings might not be the only thing keepimg your baby up at night – or causing them to wake early. As the weather heats up, your baby maybe be getting too hot at night so ensure that their room is a pleasant temperature. The NHS says “a room temperature of 16 to 20C is comfortable and safe for sleeping babies.” Your baby may just need light bedding or a lightweight, well-fitting baby sleep bag appropriate for the time of year. If it is very warm, your baby may not need any bedclothes other than a sheet. 

Baby playing outside

Tire them out 

Take advantage of the better weather to play outdoors with your toddler or walk with your baby. The fresh air will help tire them out and sleep better in the evenings. In fact, taking your baby outside first thing in the morning to get some natural light will help their internal body clock adjust to the lighter days.  

Remember, it might not happen overnight, but we hope that after a few adjustments your toddler’s sleep will get back to normal in the summer months - leaving them – and you – energised and ready to enjoy the sunshine!  


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