As the nation sets its clocks forward one hour this weekend for Daylight Savings Time, The Sleep Charity has revealed its top tips for minimising disruption to your sleep routine.
The concept of moving clocks forward an hour in Spring – and back an hour in Autumn – was introduced as a means of saving energy through utilising daylight during more sociable hours.
In some quarters, the concept of altering the time has been challenged, with several campaign groups calling for the idea to be scrapped.
The result of this weekend’s change will be darker mornings and lighter evenings, while the changes can also have a disruptive effect on sleep routine.
To support Brits through the change to their schedule, The Sleep Charity has published five tips for safeguarding their sleep.
- Move bedtime a little earlier, just by 10 minutes or so, in the days approaching the clocks go forward. It won’t seem too bad come Sunday when you lose an hour.
- Make sure you go out in the afternoon and get some fresh air rather than napping as it will help to re-set your biological clock.
- Practice good sleep hygiene to enhance your chances of falling asleep and staying asleep.
- Limit alcohol and caffeine intake and get some exercise (not too close to bedtime).
- Create the perfect sleeping environment – one that is cool, quiet, dark and clutter free. Remember you need a comfortable bed to sleep on, a supportive pillow and appropriate bedding.
The Sleep Charity deputy CEO Lisa Artis said: “Some may ask what difference does that hour really make? But it does. It might only be 60 minutes – but it can be surprisingly challenging for some and waking up Monday morning may be even harder than it normally is.
“Moving our clocks in either direction re-sets our circadian rhythm which means for a few days our own internal body clocks becomes out of sync with our normal day/night cycle.
“Within a day you should feel fine as our bodies are generally good at adjusting to one-hour changes. Some people will feel little effect from the clocks changing, some will feel an impact especially if they already don’t get enough sleep.”