How To Prep For Daylight Saving Time

Daylight Saving Time begins on Sunday and getting prepared now will help you through it. When we ‘spring forward” an hour it means clock changes, contributing to less sleep in the days following and, of course, later sunsets. Arizona andHawaii don’t observe the time change, so they don’t deal with the side effects. The biggest issue is the “delay” in your sleep-wake cycle, which makes you feel tired in the morning and awake at night.

Here is how the Sleep Foundation recommends you prepare for Daylight Saving Time to avoid a big hit to your sleep:

  • Avoid Alcohol Before Bed: While drinking can cause you to feel sleepy initially, alcohol also causes sleep disruptions and leads to poor sleep quality.
  • Establish a Consistent Sleep Routine: Going to bed and waking up at the same time each day – including the weekends – is a healthy sleep hygiene practice that can also prepare you for time changes. Make sure you get at least seven hours of sleep each night before and after transitioning to or from DST.
  • Gradually Alter Your Bedtime: Two to three days before the transition between Standard Time and DST in early March, sleep experts recommend waking up 15-20 minutes earlier than usual. Then, on the Saturday before the time change, set your alarm clock back by an additional 15-20 minutes. Adjusting your wake-up time can help the body make a smoother transition when the time change occurs.
  • Spend Time Outdoors: Since natural light is a driving force behind our circadian rhythms, exposure to sunlight can alleviate feelings of tiredness during the day that often accompany time changes. Spending time outside during the day also suppresses the production of melatonin, a hormone released in the evening to help you feel tired and ready for bed.
  • Nap in Moderation: People who experience sleep debt as a result of DST may find some relief by taking short naps during the day. These naps should never exceed 20 minutes in length; otherwise, you may wake up feeling groggy. Rather than adjusting your wake-up time on Sunday morning immediately following a time change, consider a nap that afternoon instead.
  • Don’t Consume Caffeine Too Close to Bedtime: Caffeine consumed within six hours of bedtime can disrupt your sleep cycle. Moderate amounts of caffeine in the morning or early afternoon should have less of an effect on your sleep.

Source: Sleep Foundation

Sponsored Content

Sponsored Content