Time Saved or Time Wasted?


Jancy Suber, Writer

It’s the getting dark too early for me! If you are wondering what I am talking about, we have George Vernon Hudson and William Willett to thank for our wacky sleep schedules.

Oxford Languages defines Daylight Saving Time as time adjusted to achieve longer evening daylight in summer by setting the clocks an hour ahead of the standard time. It can mess with our body clock and trigger issues detrimental to our health. The side effects can vary from person to person and even include bipolar disorder. When you set your clock forward in the spring, it usually means you lose an hour of sleep, which can make you tired. Just like losing an hour of sleep in the spring can affect our health, gaining an hour of sleep in the fall can do the opposite. Effects include increased heart attack rates and a decrease in car accidents. The disruption of our twenty-four-hour circadian rhythm is set off by the imbalance of time changes. Despite what people may argue, Daylight Saving Time does not actually make the day longer. On the day after Daylight Saving Time starts, the sun rises and sets at a later time, however the Sun’s course is not altered. The times of sunrise and sunset gradually change throughout the year.

Recently, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine concluded that a standard, year-round time would be the best solution to accommodate our circadian rhythm sleep-wake cycle.

Researching millions of United States and Canadian records, Stanley Coren concluded that accidents increase instantly after the spring-forward time change, which shortens sleep. Another spring-forward study showed people are more likely to cyberloaf, or waste time online. On that following “sleepy Monday,” judges are more likely punish offenders with sentences that are five percent longer than average.

Daylight Saving Time does not have to be a sleep-manipulation experiment that determines your attitude and the way you carry yourself. There are numerous ways you can cope and adjust your sleep habits. More sleep often times equals better health. Tips to make the transition easier include adjusting your body clock, eating a healthy breakfast, and exercising. Waking up a little earlier than normal in the week before springing forward helps you get out of bed. Starting the day with a balanced breakfast tells your body the day has begun. Sunlight and exercise help adjust your body clock to fit in with your sleep schedule.

I think we can do away with Daylight Saving Time because it just is not necessary! I feel like my sleep schedule is upside down and twisted. I feel less motivated to do schoolwork and I find myself dosing off periodically throughout the day. It is weird to get out of school and only have just another hour of sunlight before it looks dark and gloomy outside.

Am I the only one who feels like this? I’d love to know your thoughts. Drop your comments below.