(Photo: Charlie Riedel, AP)
Don’t forget to set your clocks ahead 1 hour before you go to be on Saturday evening. Sunday, March 10th at 2 a.m. is the start of daylight saving time, which means all of sleep-deprived America loses one precious hour of shut-eye.
It’s the most fussed-about hour of the year. For many, the disruption is torture.
About 61% of Americans say changing the clocks has an effect on them, and 40% say it takes them at least one week to get back to normal, according to a recent survey by the Better Sleep Council, a mattress industry group.
Experts are conflicted.
“That one hour doesn’t have as dramatic of an effect as people think,” says David Volpi, founder and medical director of Eos Sleep, a center for treatment of snoring and sleep apnea. “I think people use that as an excuse. It’s only an hour. It’s not like you are dealing with jet lag.”
On the other hand, sleep educator Nancy Rothstein says the small shift makes a huge difference. “Our body clock is a natural thing. Changing the clock is not natural. It’s a man-made thing that forces changes on us,” Rothstein says. “People have enough trouble with their sleep as it is. Seventy-six percent of Americans want a better night of sleep.”
And on a Monday morning? That’s rough.
According to a survey from Sleepy’s, the mattress retailer, nearly 70% of Americans would favor moving the time change from 2 a.m. Sunday to 2 a.m. Saturday.
Sleepy’s even has a link on Facebook for sleep devotees to sign a petition urging lawmakers to officially change the day. The petition says the shift would soften the Monday morning clock shock that many will feel after springing forward.
But not everyone is bummed.
Randy Alfred, 59, of Toronto, Canada, which also follows Daylight Saving Time, says he’d gladly trade that hour of sleep for more light in the evenings.
“My wife and I are walkers in the evening after work, and the dark takes the fun right out of it,” Alfred says. “We usually hit the sidewalks at 6 or 6:30 and it’s already dark. To us it means spring’s coming.”
Alfred is not alone.
“I look forward to it every year,” says Phaedra Steele, 44, of Orlando. “I feel alive when there is more daylight. We live on a lake and it allows us time to paddle board.”
One thing is certain: You have to remember to change your clocks. Otherwise, your sleep-deprived boss might not be so happy.
Source: USA Today