As the nation sets its clocks forward on the last Sunday 26 March for Daylight Savings Time (DST), The Sleep Charity has revealed its top tips for dealing with the time change.
The notion of moving clocks forward an hour in Spring – and back an hour in Autumn – was introduced as a means of saving energy through utilising daylight during more sociable hours.
However, this has come under scrutiny in recent with years with multiple groups and campaigns demanding that the change be scrapped, believing that DST causes increases in cardiovascular disease, car accidents and strokes.
Supporters of this weekend’s change say the positives are brighter evenings, reduced seasonal depression and an increase in economic activity.
To support Brits through the change to their schedule, The Sleep Charity has published five tips for maintaining sleep patterns.
- Make sure you go out in the afternoon and get some fresh air rather than napping as it will help to re-set your biological clock.
- Limit alcohol and caffeine intake and get some physical exercise (not too close to bedtime).
- Practice good sleep hygiene to enhance your chances of falling asleep and staying asleep.
- Move bedtime a little earlier, just by 10 minutes or so, in the days approaching the clocks go forward. It won’t seem too bad come Sunday when you lose an hour.
- Create the ideal sleeping environment – one that is cool, quiet, dark and clutter free. Remember you need a comfortable bed to sleep on, a supportive pillow and appropriate bedding.
Deputy CEO of The Sleep Charity, Lisa Artis, said: “An hour may not seem like much in the grand scheme of things, but when it comes to our sleep it can make a real difference for some people.
“When the clocks go forward, it can be unexpectedly difficult for some people, making that Monday morning wake-up much harder.
“Changing our clocks in either direction re-sets our circadian rhythm which means for a few days our internal body clocks are out of sync with our normal day and night cycles.
“Within a day you should feel back to normal as our bodies are generally good at adapting to one-hour changes. Some people will feel little to no effect from the clocks changing, while some will feel an impact, especially if they already don’t get enough sleep.”
For advice on how to improve your sleep hygiene, please visit: https://thesleepcharity.org.uk/information-support/adults/sleep-hygiene/