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The clocks went back this morning – but is it such a great idea? Yes, we got an extra hour in bed – but the end of Daylight Saving also signals an hour less of precious sunshine every afternoon.
The twice a year disruption could soon be a thing of the past, if scientists have their way. Hawaii and most of Arizona stopped messing about with their clocks 50 years ago – is it time the rest of us followed suit?
Scientists believe the time changes can have an adverse effect on our mental and physical well-being, as well as a potentially greater risk of strokes and heart attacks. It is said that traffic deaths and medical errors also rise after clocks are moved forward in the spring.
Beth Malow, a professor of neurology and pediatrics at Vanderbilt University, told Scientific American: “People think, ‘Well, it’s only an hour, so it’s not a big deal. It’s kind of like traveling from Nashville, to New York – going from Central to Eastern time.’ But [daylight saving] really isn’t that. It’s a misalignment of your biological rhythms, or circadian rhythms, for eight months out of the year.”
She added: “Most people agree that we need to get rid of this transition back and forth. I am an advocate for a permanent standard because I look at light as really important for our well-being, our mood, and our sleep. Getting enough light, especially in the winter, is critical. To me, the beauty of the permanent standard is: you have your light in the morning in the winter, when you need it, and you have your dark in the summer, when you need it.”
Read the full interview here and tell us your thoughts!