The clocks go back an hour at 02:00 AM Sunday morning, providing an extra hour of much needed sleep. “As many as 30 per cent of people in society are chronically sleep deprived,” says Dr. Charles Samuels, the Medical Director of Calgary’s Centre for Sleep & Human Performance. Another common problem this time of year is Seasonal Affective Disorder (or SAD). Also, known as the “Winter Blues,” SAD means a person who is normally very alert can become overly tired as their body struggles to cope with a lack of sunlight.
Dr. Samuels recommends:
- Maintaining your regular bedtime on Saturday night when the clocks move back so that you are more likely to get that extra hour of sleep to help reduce sleep debt.
- Keep your room dark when you are sleeping. Do not be in bright light or expose yourself to bright light through the use of technology before bed.
- Increase light when you wake up. Light has an alerting effect that may help you get going in the morning. It will also help adjust your biological clock to the “new” sleep schedule.