Adjusting to the end of Daylight Saving Time

Posted on: October 29, 2014

Fall Back with Ease

by Dr. Praveen Rudraraju
fall leavesAdjusting to the end of Daylight Saving Time in the fall is a bit easier than handling the time change in the spring.

The main reason is because we gain an hour of sleep for the fall time change.

Try to go to bed at your usual time, most people are sleep deprived – it’s a good time to take advantage of the extra hour.

The first few days might be difficult as the sun sets close to 5 pm – you get out of the office after a hard day’s work only to see the darkness. My advice is to take advantage of the early sun in the morning which can help boost your mood.

Usually it’s short sleepers and early risers that have some difficulty adjusting to the fall back, as they can’t seem to take advantage of extra hour of sleep. If this describes you, delay your bed time by one hour so you’ll wake up at your regular time.

Tip for those with kids: If your 2 year-old is waking up at 6 am, try putting her to bed 15 minutes later each day starting few days before the time change (otherwise be prepared to be woken up at 5 am when the time changes).

In some people it may take up to one week to get used to the new time change.

Editor’s Note:  Praveen Rudraraju, MD is the Director of the Center for Sleep Medicine at Northern Westchester Hospital.

The National Fire Protection Association and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission recommend that consumers change the battery in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors when we change the clocks for Daylight Saving Time.