We welcomed the start of the British Summertime this weekend! This was signalled by the clocks going forward which should bring better weather, long summer nights and lighter mornings.
However, the negative was we lost an hour of precious sleep, although some of you may ask what difference that hour can really make.
If you’re already somewhat sleep-deprived, giving up just one hour of shuteye can negatively impact how you feel and function during the day, perhaps even compromising your alertness and reaction time while driving.
It may only be 60 minutes but it can be surprisingly challenging and we noticed waking up Monday morning was a tad harder than it normally is – did you?
Your body’s internal clock (or circadian rhythm) may be thrown off course, which can affect how much sleep-inducing melatonin is released.
An extra hour of light in the late afternoon is great but the early morning hours are dark meaning your body’s internal clock may not be quite ready to wake up when the alarm goes off.
These changes can make it harder to get going in the morning and perhaps more difficult to go to bed at your usual hour.
How To Adjust
Within a few days, you should adjust to the new time schedule naturally as your circadian rhythm catches up.
In the meantime, practice good sleep hygiene to enhance your chances of falling asleep. Limit alcohol and caffeine intake, get some exercise, switch off electronic devices at least an hour before bed and get used to a calming wind-down routine.
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.