Did you know that Daylight Savings Time in Houston is happening again on March 14th? It’s spring so we’re “springing” forward and losing an hour of sleep…I know it happens on the weekend but it can still be tough to adjust to the difference.
Today we’re sharing some of our best tips for adjusting to losing an hour of sleep and how you can acclimate yourself, your pets, and even kids to the new schedule.
Tips for adjusting to Daylight Savings Time in Houston:
Lately it seems like more and more places are working to rid their states of Daylight Savings Time. Unfortunately in the meantime we have to deal with it! The biggest problem is that whenever we change the clocks it also messes with the body’s internal timing.
We are creatures of habit, even if we don’t realize it, our bodies respond naturally to the outdoor light. It’s what causes disorders like Seasonal Affective Disorder in the winter months, etc. When we change the clocks we can’t as easily change our internal clocks. The same goes for pets and children.
When it comes to feeding schedules this can be particularly tricky! Pets and kids will be pesting for snacks and meals earlier because their bodies are more schedule oriented and not necessarily tied to a time on a screen!
One of the easiest things you can do this weekend to avoid any issues Monday morning is to avoid alcohol. Go to sleep a little bit early if you can but also avoid alcohol. Since your body will have less time to fight the effects you don’t want to indulge and then be facing a longer hangover.
Create A Sleep Environment
If you aren’t already taking steps to create a sleep environment that is consistent and relaxing you might want to start! The key element to these time changes is the light changes. You’ll be going to bed in the dark probably but if you aren’t you’ll need to create a dark space. Get some dark curtains, control the temperature of your sleeping space, and be prepared for things to be a little more dark/light when you wake up in the morning.
In this way you can trick your body into thinking the time is the same. If your body doesn’t have those natural cues for the time of day because the sun is still shining you’ll want to mimic the effects.
Plan ahead. Head to bed an hour early everyday this weekend. Try and avoid leaving the big shift for Sunday into Monday. Studies have shown that more accidents and heart attacks happen on that Monday when we spring forward than at other times throughout the year. It can be stressful. The easiest way to avoid that stress is to plan ahead.
Heading to bed early so you can relax and fall asleep at a normal time will help you avoid feeling sleep deprived. This can also help children ease into the transition.
Don’t Take Naps
It can be tempting to try and fight the problem with napping but that will likely just throw off your entire sleep schedule. Unless naps are a part of your normal routine you’ll want to avoid them during this weekend leading up to the time change and in the days after!
Coffee Is Not Your Friend
Just like with alcohol, you won’t want to overindulge in coffee or other caffeine either! Caffeine will mess with your sleep rhythms so you should avoid it 6-8 hours before bed and don’t rely on it to cope with less sleep. It will leave you feeling irritable and jittery. Instead, make sure you stay hydrated and start your day with a nutritious breakfast to help give you a boost on that toughest Monday morning of the year!