Daylight Saving Time begins this Sunday with moving clocks forward one hour. As we move clocks forward, we lose an hour of sleep that can have negative consequences for many people. There could be health and safety concerns if you lose that hour of sleep. According to research from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, drivers who miss between one to two hours of the recommended seven hours of sleep nearly double their risk of a crash. In addition, employees have reduced productivity the Monday after changing their clock forward according to Occupational Safety Group, Inc.
Pushing the clock forward one hour negatively affects our sleep quality by making it more difficult to fall asleep and making it difficult to stay asleep. According to Fast Company, this negative impact could last "up to a week after the transition.” Your immune system could also be compromised making it easier to get sick. Take some extra time to prepare for the time change so you can stay healthy and safe this weekend and into next week.
According to Fast Company, here are some tips for having an easier transition:
- Cut the Caffeine After Noon – since the time change can make it harder to fall and stay asleep, cut out caffeine after lunch to prepare your body to fall asleep. Do this even leading up to Daylight Savings to have a stronger impact.
- Use Evening Meditation to Wind Down – there have been many articles about the importance of an evening routine. Adding some time to wind down and meditate can help calm yourself before sleep. Even outside of Daylight Savings, this could be an effective stress relieving activity.
- No Screens After Dinner – limit screen time after work. It is common knowledge that the blue light from electronic devices makes your brain think that it is daytime. It prevents the production of melatonin that helps manage the sleep/wake cycle. Set your favorite TV shows to record for the next few days and pick up a paper book or do another activity that does not involve screens. You can catch up on TV during the weekend.
- Swap the Glass of Wine for an Herbal Tea – try to avoid alcohol as we head into the Daylight Savings weekend. If you want an evening beverage, try a tea that has calming ingredients like chamomile.
Preparing for the time change means preparing for safety and an easier transition. Be vigilant as you change your clocks forward so you can stay safe and healthy. Moreover, if you are driving on Sunday or the first few days after the time change, make sure you have extra rest.
One Team. One Vision. One Goal. – Everyone Goes Home Safe!