This weekend is daylight savings time and we’ll all be springing forward. But this time change comes with a disadvantage, as we will lose one hour of sleep. For those who do not suffer from sleep disruption, this may not seem like a problem for you. But if you are an insomnia sufferer, daylight savings can really put a damper on your sleep cycle.
According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, 30-35% of adults will experience temporary insomnia symptoms such as irritability, mood swings, anxiety, and poor concentration. And for those who experience temporary insomnia because of a change in their sleep schedule or daylight savings, this is just a glimpse of the daily struggles those who suffer from chronic insomnia face.
If you know that daylight savings greatly interrupts your sleep schedule and puts you on a rough patch for the days following, there are some measures you can take to prepare for the time change and reduce your risk of further complicating your insomnia symptoms or trigger temporary insomnia.
- Go to bed early. Life is busy, and every minute is packed full. But make the effort to go to bed 15-20 minutes earlier the night before the time change. That short amount of extra sleep will make a difference as you adjust to the time change.
- Start your nighttime routine sooner. Your body has time cues that it knows the end of the day is coming near like dinner time, showering or preparing for the next day. If you can, do those tasks just a little bit sooner and your body will be able to fall asleep faster.
- Go outside. Sunday morning will be a bit dark, but once the sun is up, enjoy the sunshine and reset your internal clock. This can help with your sleep schedule and make you more alert for the day. If the weather allows, even consider exercising a bit–you’ll feel great and it’ll help your body adjust to the time change.
Nobody likes losing an hour of sleep. But we do all benefit from the extra sunshine in the evening hours. It may be an adjustment, but by following these tips, you can spring forward and leave insomnia behind.
Still tossing and turning?
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NOTE: Content included here is not medical advice, and only is intended as information for adults. Always consult with your health care professional before making changes to diet, exercise, medication, or before use of any product or device.