The return to Standard Time started Sunday, November 7 – a routine that results in adjustment not only to our watches but also to our internal clocks. While we gain an extra hour of sleep on Sunday, the change to our sleep schedules can disrupt our well-being.
Daylight Saving Time came to an end at 2 a.m. Sunday, which means daylight will begin earlier in the morning and the sun will set earlier in the afternoon as fall progresses.
Dr. Joseph De Koninck, a psychology professor at the University of Ottawa, says the benefits from the time change back to standard, far outway the impacts on one's health.
"We are going to have sunlight earlier in the morning and morning light is the most important for our biological clock," Dr. De Koninck explains. "There is a bit of disruption, of one hour, for our biological clock. Even if it is in a good direction, it does have an impact. Some people are more sensitive than others to this change."
On the other side of things, Dr. De Koninck says those who are working during the day may experience some depression due to the lack of daylight when their shift ends.
"People may feel more depressed because, in the afternoon, we have suddenly this darkness that comes an hour earlier. That's also normal to have," says Dr. De Koninck "Some people who have seasonal depression will be more affected."
Dr. De Koninck says there are many ways to prevent those feelings such as taking a walk early in the morning or sitting in front of a window. He says this can have a rejuvenating effect on some people.
Today on Connections, Dr. Jospeh De Koninck helps us to better understand the health impacts of time change.