Daylight Saving Time: Its Influence on Your Body and How to Control It
We will officially say goodbye to summer in a few days - and on 29 October, we will enter winter time and turn our clocks back one hour. We have been changing the clocks in this way for more than 100 years; however, benefits of daylight savings time to the economy (through electricity savings) or to people have not yet been proven. On the contrary, there are plenty of controversial opinions and suggestions that support abandoning the different summer-winter times completely. But as this has not yet happened, the effects of the daylight savings time on the human body, and some tips on how to reduce them, are presented below.
Causes and Consequences of One Hour
First of all, here’s a bit of history. The main factor that initiated the clock turning procedure was the intention to save energy, because there supposedly would be more daylight when the clock was turned back or forward, and therefore we would use less electricity. However, after thorough research was performed in the United States, it turned out that the electricity payments in private households dropped by just 1%. Thus, the economic benefits (the main reason for the practice) are hard to see. Now let’s discuss the effects on the human body.
The clock changes can affect both the physical and mental well-being of a person. Let's start with the fact that the human biological clock is disrupted. This can lead to stress, anxiety, severe sleep deprivation, or even to suffering from insomnia. The cause of this is a hormone called melatonin that is produced during sleep, which is essential for our health and a positive mood: it regulates the interactions of all the bodily systems, slows down the aging processes, and it affects our psyche and efficiency at work.
A number of studies have been carried out that prove there is an increased risk of stroke due to the clock turning. Individuals with cardiac disorders are particularly sensitive to the changes in the body which are caused by the annual time changes, especially to the negative ones such as stress, anxiety or insomnia. Persons with neurological diseases will also react very sensitively to this.
Another interesting effect of the clock turning is a strongly increased level of cyberloafing during working hours. A few years ago, a study in the US showed that on the Monday after the clocks change, employees spend more time browsing social networks and watching funny videos or pictures of cute animals, instead of working. According to the study, this is not a deliberate omission of work – instead, this behaviour is caused by the stress that our bodies are experiencing, by heart arrhythmias, and by the body’s inability to adapt to the artificially modified time regime.
The Smart Antidote for Clock Changes and Insomnia
As it has been already mentioned, one of the most significant negative effects of the clock changes is the reduced quality of sleep. Everything stems from this: fatigue, stress, inability to concentrate, and a bad mood. Only a few years ago, the main medical advice for treating insomnia was a cup of soothing tea and a book. However, times have changed, and now Smart Bracelets are the tools that can best help to improve the quality of sleep.
Smart Bracelets come in a variety of models with different functions. Most people think that such bracelets are only suitable for sport and for tracing the number of calories that have been burned. But that's not the case at all – some of these bracelets have a pulsometer that will allow you to track your sleep as well. "Soon we will supplement our range with a bracelet that has a pulsometer, which monitors your heart rate and your physical activity. These indicators will also show you how deep your sleep was, when you fell asleep and when you woke up, in a special mobile app," said Ignas Rumbutis, Head of the Product Development Division of ACME Europe. "For example, if you wake up before your body does, your pulse increases by 10-20 beats per minute. You probably will not notice this, but the pulsometer will capture everything,” Ignas Rumbutis added.
Sleep Cycles and How Observing Them with a Smart Bracelet Improves Sleep Quality
Contrary to what most people think, sleep is not a continuous process. Sleep consists of certain cycles that repeat from 3 to 5 times during the night. A cycle consists of both slow-wave and paradoxical sleep. The most important phase of a person's slow-wave sleep is the deep sleep, since during this time the body rests the most and restores the energy that was consumed during the day. If you sleep too little in the deep sleep phase, you will feel tired. Each cycle lasts for 90-110 minutes, during which the slow-wave sleep phase should for last about 45 minutes.
It is impossible to tell how much time you have slept in each sleep phase on your own. However, by following the information provided by the Smart Bracelets, you can greatly improve the quality of your sleep as you will see exactly how long and in which sleep phase you have slept. Therefore, if you noticed that you could not fall asleep for a long time the night before, try to go to bed an hour later. And vice versa, if the data indicates that you were in a deep sleep phase for too little time, go to bed early or allow yourself to get up a bit later.
Of course, the traditional methods should also not be put aside: do not eat too much food before going to bed, do not watch TV, try to relax and do not get involved with any work that requires a lot of physical effort.Share