The gloomy winter months will soon be behind us. For many, this means happier days as winter is when depression is peaked with Seasonal Affective Disorder running rapidly. More (sun)shine doesn’t necessarily mean we’ll all be happier. Daylight saving time does affect the mental health of some.
It might have to do with an hour less of sleep
Even though losing an hour can be disruptive in and of itself due to fatigue, some people may experience severe problems as a result of springing forward.
The first three weekdays following the springtime time change are when the risk of having a heart attack increases. The Monday after the start of the jump sees an increase in traffic accidents, with fatigue brought on by the time change being thought to be the primary contributor.
In contrast to other Mondays, Mondays following the start of Daylight Saving Time saw a higher number of serious workplace accidents. Miscarriages in women who had in vitro fertilization have also been connected to the beginning of Daylight Saving Time.
DST can trigger depression
Following the transition to standard time, the loss of an hour of afternoon sunlight can precipitate bipolar disorder and seasonal affective disorder.
An 11% rise in depression cases was observed after the time change, according to a Danish study. After 10 weeks, the cases slowly started to fade.
An Australian study discovered that the days following the spring and fall DST shifts saw an increase in male suicide rates.
Make it easier on yourself
Productivity, focus, and general well-being can all suffer from being too tired. It is possible to handle the time change in a few straightforward ways:
In the week leading up to spring forward, modify your internal clock and rise a little earlier than usual. Because of this, getting out of bed on Monday is simpler.
Early in the morning, eat a healthy breakfast. Your body receives a signal from food that the day has begun.
Walk outside in the daylight. The body clock is unsynchronized by sunlight and exercise.
By putting kids to bed a little earlier the week before the time change, you can aid in their adjustment.
If I could add my two cents
On a personal note, while spring is my second favourite season of all seasons, April, May and June are triggering months for me and it used to be a bear to survive through. However, for the past few years, I’ve been able to turn triggering energy into good. I now look forward to May as I gear up for our big walk. It’s the months leading up to the day - this year, it being on May 27th is the most fun and fulfilling. I push myself to hit the gym, be healthier, cut back on drinking, and be more creative in my ways of collecting donations. I’m working out both mentally and physically. Taking on a rewarding cause after DST might help you concentrate on the positive rather than getting into that whirlwind of anxiety that this time tends to bring. You can register solo as a team here.