Daylight savings time can be tough. The time change can disrupt our circadian rhythms, causing our body to become “confused” and leaving us feeling jet-lagged.
But here are a few things that might help:
1) Gradually adjust.
The American Academy of Sleep Medicine suggests gradually adjusting your sleep schedule by going to bed 15 or 20 minutes earlier each night before the time change to give your body time to adjust.
2) Get enough sleep.
Many adults should get 7-8 hours of sleep at night. If you want to calculate how much sleep you need, check with the AASM Sleep Calculator.
Maintain your typical physical activity levels during the time change to keep your body and your mind sharp.
4) Maintain good sleep hygiene.
Maintaining good sleep hygiene will be helpful during the time change:
- Avoid alcohol before bed to prevent fragmented sleep
- Avoid heavy meals or drinking lots of fluids right before bed (these can keep you tossing and turning or heading to the bathroom all night)
- Keep the bedroom for sleep and sex only so that you associate the bedroom with relaxing activities.
- Keep your room dark and cool in order to help you sleep your best.
5) Listen to your body.
Above all else do what feels right for you. If you need a nap, take a nap. If your body tells you to get up and get moving earlier than usual, do that.
Happy Daylight Savings Time!
Dr. Jen Caudle
Dr. Jen Caudle is a Family Doctor & Associate Professor at Rowan University, an On-air health expert, and a video creator. Please sign up for her free newsletter and follow her on Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube for daily health videos.