The fall time change offers opportunity to adjust sleep patterns
On Sunday morning, the clocks will fall back to mark the official end of daylight savings time (DST). Northwestern Medicine® sleep experts warn that the one hour time shift can be disruptive to sleep patterns, but that it also offers an excellent opportunity to evaluate and improve sleep patterns.
"As people reset their clocks, they should also take this opportunity to reset their sleep habits in order to avoid possible health consequences," said Hrayr P. Attarian, MD, neurologist at Northwestern Memorial Hospital and associate professor of neurology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. "Sleep problems are widespread and on the rise, yet many people dismiss the issue and don't realize the consequences that can result. Sleep deprivation has been linked to obesity, trouble with memory and learning and a higher incidence of diabetes and high blood pressure."
Even with the one hour gain, Attarian recommends keeping the same bedtime to avoid feeling sleep deprived on Monday. Practicing proper sleep habits is key to getting a good night's sleep not only at the time change, but throughout the year. Attarian recommends the following tips: