At 2 a.m. Sunday, time will spring ahead an hour, marking the start of daylight saving time.

While it's easy to move the hands on a clock, it could take a few days for Americans to reset their internal clocks.

Dr. Vishal Sawhney, a pulmonary, critical care and sleep medicine doctor at Mercy Medical Center in Stark County, said this weekend's time change could affect people differently. Most commonly, many will experience sleep deprivation.

With the clock jumping ahead an hour, many people may not get their recommended amount of sleep. For an adult, that's at least seven hours. For teens, it's a minimum of 10 hours of sleep.

"If deprived [of sleep] it affects alertness. It decreases professional productivity. There is rudeness and more depression and anxiety," Sawhney said.

It also increases the risk for traffic crashes.

Drivers who miss between one and two hours of the recommended seven hours of sleep nearly double their risk of a crash, said Dr. Delia Treaster, an ergonomic technical adviser for the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation, Division of Safety and Hygiene.

That loss of sleep can make the Monday morning commute hazardous. Drowsiness can slow reaction time, impair vision and judgment and delay the processing of information.

Starting to go to bed 15 minutes earlier than normal can help reset your circadian rhythm and cue the body to go to sleep earlier, minimizing sleep loss.

Sawhney also recommended eating dinner earlier and avoiding caffeine and alcohol.

When it comes to teens and younger children, Sawhney said, the time change can have an even greater impact.

He suggests not only going to bed earlier, but also turning off electronic devices such as TVs, cellphones, iPads and video games at least an hour before bed.

 

Can't trust Mondays

As Mondays are typically already a difficult time for people, he suggests exposing yourself to a bright light early in the morning to reset circadian rhythm and help get you back on a good sleep schedule.

"Even one hour of loss of sleep can be detrimental," Sawhney said. "On Sunday, you have to get at least seven hours of sleep so you are not as impacted by the change. If you are not prepared to achieve seven hours of sleep, they are going to have more difficulty in advancing their sleep patterns."

Roughly five days after the time change, people will adjust and be back to a normal sleep patterns, he said. It will take less time for some and could take more for others.

Sawhney suggested not taking naps during the day and not taking sedatives.

He also warned people who take medication to begin taking it earlier as well to ensure there is no impact on health.

 

Why daylight saving time?

Most states observe daylight saving time for eight months each year. Many people think there are benefits to keeping it year-round; others disagree.

The main purpose of daylight saving time is to make better use of daylight. It was first suggested by Benjamin Franklin in his essay, "An Economical Project for Diminishing the Cost of Light" in 1784.

It was largely overlooked until the early 1900s when Englishman William Willett suggested advancing the clock one hour in the spring and back again in the autumn in 1908.

The United States adopted the idea at the end of World War I in an attempt to conserve energy.

The first daylight saving time took place March 15, 1918. With many opponents to the change, government officials allowed state and local governments to decide whether to keep up with the practice. Daylight saving time was reinstated during World War II.

According to the book "Spring Forward: The Annual Madness of Daylight Saving Time" by Michael Downing, it wasn't until the the Uniform Time Act of 1966 that daylight saving time was observed uniformly.

Hawaii and Arizona still do not participate in the time change as well as some U.S. territories such as American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

Recently, three Florida lawmakers introduced legislation that would end the fall clock change, permanently keeping the country on daylight saving time.

The new bill, called the Sunshine Protection Act of 2019, also follows similar legislation enacted in the state of Florida.

According to The Associated Press, the Florida legislation cannot go into effect until Washington passes a measure allowing it.