Author: Sara Habibipour
Ugh. The time of year that we all dread...time-change season.
In honor of spring-forward day, let's talk about circadian rhythm.
Circadian rhythm is your body's sleep-wake cycle that repeats every 24 hours. Pretty cool that our bodies know how to do that!
Moving our clocks forward (or in either direction really) changes the main proponent that affects our circadian rhythm, light. In doing so, our internal clock becomes out of sync or mismatched with our current day-night cycle. Because of this, people often feel extra tired when they wake up on Monday. In general, "losing" an hour in the spring is more difficult to adjust to than "gaining" an hour in the fall.
Some studies show an overall reduction in traffic accidents and fatalities due to daylight-saving time changes. However, one study showed a significant increase in accident rates on the Monday following daylight-saving time, attributing sleepiness as the cause. Perhaps this variation has to do with which time-change the authors were talking about? What do you think?