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  • 4. Don't cut corners at bedtime.

    It's easy to think that getting the kids to bed as fast as possible can help them get more sleep and therefore make waking up with the time change easier. But Dr. Elizabeth Meade, chief of pediatrics at the Swedish Medical Center in Seattle, says it's important to keep kids' bedtime routine the same, even if it requires some advance planning. 

    "Stick to your usual bedtime routines, whether that means bath time, reading, brushing teeth, or whatever nighttime rituals your child is used to," she suggests. "For example, don't skip out on reading in an effort to get them to bed earlier if they're used to two books before bed -- just move the reading time up in conjunction with an earlier bedtime."

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  • 5. Do think like a vampire in the evenings.

    Avoiding bright light leading up to bedtime can also help with the switch to DST. "Darkness helps to turn on melatonin (a hormone that helps induce sleep)," says Dr. Nowakowski. Stick to hanging out indoors in the late afternoon and evening until the family has adjusted to the time change. You can also close the drapes and use low watt bulbs to keep your house dim. If you have to be outside at those times, Dr. Nowakowski reminds us that kids' sunglasses aren't just adorable, but they'll also help block the light from your children's eyes, making it easier for them to fall asleep later.

  • 6. Don't worry about adjusting nap time.

    If your little one still snoozes during the day, A: we're jealous, and B: you might wonder if the start of DST means nap time needs to get bumped up too. "There is no need to adjust naps during the day," says Dr. Jared Patton. "This is especially important for those that must go to daycare or an early education center." If you're home and the baby seems sleepy earlier, rest is best, so put him down and don't worry about it. But in general kids will naturally calculate the change in time for daytime naps, so no need to leave special instructions for the babysitter.

  • 7. Do make screen time DST friendly.

    "Artificial light can suppress melatonin," reminds Dr. Nowakowski. She suggests switching phones and tablets to iOS night shift to minimize blue light if watching in the evening and making sure the hour before bed is screen-free.

    And if you're wondering if this weekend is the perfect time to try cutting screen time, it might be best to hold off. "As far as making additional changes in the way of limiting screen time usage, I would not advise. It is best to make only one change at a time. Too many adjustments may confuse the issue at hand," says Miami pediatrician Dr. Gary Kramer.

  • 8. Don't ignore your own sleep needs.

    The shift in time can be just as rough on adults as it is on kids, and being tired and cranky alongside them is bound to lead to some less-than-stellar parenting moments. Consider following this plan along with your mini-me so that you'll all feel rested on Sunday morning.

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