Daylight Savings Time and Sleep

The spring beginning of DST (“spring forward”) results in a sleep phase advance

  • delayed waking
  • delayed bedtime
  • total time in bed not changed
  • increased sleep fragmentation and sleep latency (time to get to sleep)

The autumn end of DST (“fall back”) results in a sleep phase delay

  • earlier waking
  • decreased time in bed and total sleep time
  • there is little evidence that people get an “extra hour” the night of the change
  • 5 days of earlier waking due to change –> net sleep loss across the week
  • indirect evidence for increase in traffic accidents and even MI rates

Overall, our circadian rhythm adjusts better to a phase delay (“fall back” in the autumn) vs a phase advance (“spring forward” in the spring).

References:

Sleep Med Rev 2013

 

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