Sleep experts explain Daylight Saving Time's impact on body, offer tips
GOSHEN, Ind. – Daylight Saving Time is on Sunday and sleep experts say when the clock jumps to 3 a.m., the lost hour of sleep could affect people in a number of ways.
Richard Osborn is a supervisor at Goshen Health’s Sleep Disorder Center.
“Sleep is very important,” said Osborn. “There are things you can do to get better sleep and there are consequences to not prioritizing it.”
He said sleep plays a vital role in a person’s health. Osborn explained during sleep, a person’s body repairs and grows the brain forms and retains memories, and more. Between seven and nine hours of pillow time is usually what people need.
“Sleep is interwoven in so many aspects of our lives, and unfortunately, a lot of people don’t realize how entwined that is,” said Osborn.
Osborn said people typically experience sleepiness, moodiness, and lapses in their memory for a few days to a week when clocks spring ahead.
However, he said the effects could be more severe.
“Depending on one’s health, loss of sleep has also been implicated in cardiovascular risk,” said Osborn. “Productivity goes down, judgement tends to be poorer, we’re slower on our reflexes and responses, memory lapses, generally our performance decreases emotionally, mentally, and physically and along with that, our safety to ourselves and others. We make mistakes more frequently with greater severity when we’re not well rested.”
Osborn said people should be practicing a few sleep tips starting Friday to lessen the consequences. He suggested going to bed and waking up 15 to 30 minutes earlier in the days leading up to Daylight Saving Time. He said people should check their bedding and make sure the mattress and pillows are supportive.
Experts added people should expose themselves to light as soon as you wake up since it can help reset the body’s clock. They also suggested avoiding caffeine after lunch.
“Sleep is more than just simply not being awake,” said Osborn. “A lot of activity is going on while we sleep.”