This Sunday, November 4, we set our clocks back an hour. The move back to standard time might leave you dragging come Monday morning, but there are some things you can do to help you fall back an hour without falling out of your usual sleep schedule.
In addition to taking steps to be well rested, the seasonal time change is also a good reminder to check in with our routines and our health.
Now, go get those 7-8 hours a night!
We know – it’s easier said than done. Our internal clock will adjust on its own several days after the time change, but consider making a little extra effort to be well rested in the days leading up to the time change:
- Transition into the time change a few days before daylight saving time ends by going to bed 15 minutes earlier. Avoid sleeping in an hour longer in the morning.
- If you’re starting to feel sleepy after the change, take a quick nap in the afternoon (not too close to bedtime) – just 20 minutes can do the trick!
- Adjust the light in your room – we can help our bodies find synchronicity by keeping areas bright in the morning and dim at night.
- Keep regular sleep hours – a routine sleep schedule is good for all of us and will allow our body and mind to adjust.
- Avoid caffeine and alcohol before bed – both are stimulants that will impact your body’s natural sleep patterns.
While we will gain an hour for the night (happy sleeping!), this also means we lose daylight earlier.
Don’t let those 5 pm sunsets disrupt your usual routine, but do take some extra precautions if needed to feel safe when you’re out and about as it begins to get darker earlier:
- Use the buddy system when walking to and from places
- Check the systems in your house – the bi-annual time change is a great time to replace batteries in your smoke detectors and have your heating and ventilation systems checked
- As always, be aware of your surroundings in both familiar (like work or your house) and unfamiliar environments (new places you may go)
Be well this fall – protect yourself and those around you.
The time change back to standard time also reminds us that we’re in the thick of fall, and winter-like weather isn’t too far away.
- If you haven’t gotten your flu shot, now is a great time – here’s why .
- Consider having a seasonal check-up with your primary care doctor if you haven’t already: visit missionhealth.org/providerfinder  to find a doctor and schedule an appointment online.
Be rested, be safe and be well as we fall back!