If you find it difficult adjusting to the time change, you’re not alone. The “spring forward” time change is harder to adjust to than the “fall back” change in November, due to our circadian rhythms. According to sleep specialists, our inner circadian clock finds it easier to sleep later in the morning than it does to fall asleep earlier at night. While most people adjust to the change within a couple of days, night owls find it more difficult.
Spring Forward With Precaution
One study found a 6 percent rise in workplace injuries on the Monday after the daylight-saving time change. Traffic accidents rise 11 percent, following the time change too, so drive and work with extra caution the week of the time change.
Here are 10 easy ways to help your body adjust to the new time:
1. Allow sunlight into your room soon after you wake, to help “reset” your circadian rhythm.
2. Don’t drink caffeinated beverages after lunch.
3. Exercise in the morning, afternoon or early evening, but not close to bedtime.
4. Dim the lights indoors, an hour before bedtime. Make your bedroom as dark as possible.
5. Listen to soothing, relaxing music to unwind earlier in the evening.
6. Take a warm soak in the tub before retiring. Add a few drops of a relaxing essential oil, such as lavender or mandarin to your bath water.
7. Sip a warm cup of herbal tea to unwind. These herbal teas are noted to have a calming, relaxing, and stress relieving effect: Chamomile, Lemon Balm, Lavender, Catnip and Hops. As with all herbs, seek advice from your natural health professional if you have allergies, other health conditions, or take medications.
8. These natural supplements may help you relax and get to sleep: melatonin, magnesium, and valerian. Ask your health professional which is right for you.
9. This would be a great week for you to get a Chiropractic adjustment. Chiropractic patients commonly experience a notable improvement in their quality of sleep. Chiropractic adjustments optimize nervous system function, which regulates your internal, sleep-wake cycles (circadian rhythm).
10. During the week leading up to the time change, go to bed 15 to 30 minutes earlier than usual, to help your body gradually adjust. If this isn’t possible, then make sure you don’t miss any sleep, no burning the midnight oil, this week.