It’s Daylight Saving Time Sunday, March 10 and time to spring your clocks forward one hour! That means an extra hour of evening daylight to devote to gardening, evening walks, or a visit to the park.
However, our body’s circadian rhythm may not like the sudden change in our new sleep schedule, and it may be a bit more difficult for our aging parents to adapt to a new sleep schedule. Therefore, we may need to take extra effort to help our senior parents adjust to the new spring schedule.
Adjusting to Daylight Saving Time
1. Dim the lights. Our bodies take our sleepy time cues from the amount of light we’re exposed to at bedtime. Darken the room, use a night light for bathroom trips, and dim the bedside clock.
2. Limit caffeine and alcohol. Begin limiting caffeine and alcohol in late afternoon and early evening to avoid sleeplessness and sleep disruptions.
3. Develop a bedtime routine. Calming rituals such as a warm bath, soothing music or a comforting book are cues to your body that it’s time for bed.
4. Limit exercise. Save your exercise routine for earlier in the day. The stimulation may prove too much for bedtime relaxation.
5. Maintain a schedule. Sticking to a consistent wake up time and bed time will help your body cue in to sleep.
6. Unplug electronics. Turn of the computer, telephone, television and other electronics well before bed time.
Spring is a wonderful time to enjoy extra family time! The evenings are warming up, the flowers are blooming, and it’s a great time to share with your senior loved ones. We hope you’ll be refreshed and ready to tackle each day as you adjust to Daylight Saving Time.