It’s almost that time of year again—you know, the one where we all scramble to set the clocks an hour ahead, lose out on sleep, and feel extra tired or fatigued for the whole week. Transitioning to Washington daylight saving time can be a hassle, but most of us enjoy the ultimate result of an extra hour of sunlight in the evenings.
This year, daylight saving time begins at 2:00 a.m. on March 8, 2020. You may not be able to get back that lost hour of sleep, but there are still plenty of things you can do to make easing into daylight saving time a little easier and safer. Here are five tips to spring forward safely from the team at Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys.
1. Gradually Adjust Your Sleep Schedule
If you’re particularly sensitive to the time change, you can ease transition by going to sleep about 15 minutes earlier than usual about four days before the time changes. The following night, go to sleep 30 minutes earlier. Add an extra 15 minutes each night, and by Monday morning, you should be feeling more rested and less fatigued.
2. Get More Vitamin D
Although we all love an extra hour of sunlight in the evening, Washington daylight saving time means sacrificing an hour of sunlight in the morning. If you’re an early riser, try to get some extra sunlight exposure before the time changes to absorb some extra vitamin D.
Vitamin D helps boost energy, can improve depression symptoms, and may even fight heart disease. If it’s too cloudy to sunbathe, consider opting for a vitamin D supplement instead.
3. Drive More Cautiously Than Usual
Obviously you should always drive safely, but you should be especially cautious in the days following the switch to daylight saving time. Studies have routinely shown a significant spike in fatal car accidents for as long as a week after we spring forward each year.
The data suggests that the time change can disrupt some people’s circadian rhythms, which can lead to feelings of sleepiness, mental fog, and cognitive impairment. Drowsy driving is impaired driving, so keep an eye out on the road and don’t get behind the wheel if you’re not your usual alert self.
4. Find Ways to Relieve Stress
In addition to an upswing in car accidents, health episodes like heart attacks and strokes also increase in the days following Washington daylight saving time. To protect your well-being, find healthy ways to relieve stress and reduce your risk of heart attack or stroke. Yoga, meditation, and regular exercise you enjoy are all great ways to clear your mind and release stress-busting neurotransmitters like endorphins.
5. Change Your Smoke Alarm Batteries
Experts recommend changing out the batteries in your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors twice a year. The day before spring forward and the day before the end of daylight saving time are great opportunities to make sure your home stays safe all year round.
Not only should you change out the batteries in your smoke/carbon monoxide detectors, you should also check for any signs of damage, wear and tear, and utilize the test button to make sure everything is in working order. If your units are more than 10 years old, consider replacing them.
Injured During Washington Daylight Saving Time?
Even the most careful people sometimes fall victim to injuries during daylight saving time, sometimes as a result of another person’s negligence. If you find yourself suffering injury because of a drowsy or otherwise impaired driver, contact Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys.
Call our Washington legal team at 844-977-1900. A Seattle car crash attorney will evaluate your case to find out if you might be eligible for compensation. You can also chat with a live representative online, or submit the details of your case using our secure contact form.