March 9, 2023 How to Battle Daylight Saving Time
This year, as we prepare to set our clocks forward on March 12, many of us will feel the impacts of the switch from standard time to daylight saving time (DST) on our bodies. From disrupted routines, to sleep deprivation, even insomnia, springing forward every year does have health implications. Read on to learn more about how turning the clocks forward and back every year affects our bodies, routines, and ultimately our health.
What is daylight saving time?
Daylight saving time, also known as summer time, is the practice of turning clocks forward from mid-March to November. The aim is to make better use of natural light and save on energy. Officially introduced in Germany in 1916, two years into World War I, DST was a way to cut back on the use of artificial light and save fuel for the war effort. The United Kingdom and France quickly followed suit. Today, over 70 countries practise DST with start and end dates varying from country to country. But DST might soon be a thing of the past, as many countries and territories are opting out of the spring forward.
How does daylight saving time impact your health?
Turning the clocks forward every March can have negative effects on our health. Most obvious, losing an hour of sleep can leave you feeling tired. In fact, the change means our internal body clock, or our circadian rhythm, and the local clock are out of sync. There is a growing consensus in the medical and research communities that staying on standard time is a better option. Studies have shown that it offers a better match between our body clock and social clock. Various medical studies from around the world have also made a link between DST and increased instances of heart attacks, strokes, and immune-related diseases and digestive issues. Furthermore, more research has shown an increase in car accidents and work-related injuries in the days following the switch to DST.
What can you do to minimize the impacts of daylight saving time?
Obviously, losing an hour of sleep can be hard. And feeling tired or fatigued can affect your productivity, concentration, and overall well-being. To minimize the effects of sleep loss on both yourself and your kids, here are a few tips to help you and your family ease the transition to DST:
- Go to bed and wake up a little earlier the week before the switch to help your body clock adjust.
- Similarly, get the kiddos down a little earlier each night in the week before the switch so they will have an easier time waking up for school on Monday morning.
- Make sure you eat a healthy breakfast first thing in the morning as food lets your body know it’s time to start the day.
- Capitalize on natural sunlight by going out for a walk or exercising outdoors.
- Apply a cold Magic Bag eucalyptus aromatherapy mask on the eyes to reduce eye fatigue and dark circles and eye bags.
- Apply a warm Magic Bag lavender aromatherapy eye and sinus pillow on the eyes to soothe sore eyes, add moisture to dry eyes, relieve redness or discomfort, and relax the eyes.
- Try the Magic Bag lavender aromatherapy eye masks to help promote restful sleep.
Setting the clocks forward and back twice a year affects our health and well-being. From disrupted routines to feeling fatigued and even increased heart attacks and strokes, daylight saving time is believed to have negative impacts on our bodies and minds. This March, make sure you practise self-care and take the time to let your internal clock adjust. And to help you get a more restful night of sleep and soothe eye fatigue, trust Magic Bag hot and cold compresses.
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