GREENSBORO, N.C. — This weekend we get an extra hour as daylight saving time ends. While many look forward to some extra sleep, others are wondering how it may impact getting a good night's rest in the days following.
Neurology and sleep medicine specialist Dr. Carmen Dohmeier is with Guilford Neurologic Associates. She said having an extra hour of sleep when daylight saving time ends is mostly beneficial. Most people are sleep-deprived and having that extra hour can help. Dr. Dohmeier adds anyone with a good inner clock will probably still wake up early. If you do wake up, give yourself an extra 15 minutes before you get up and move. Dr. Dohmeier said eventually, you will be back to a normal sleep schedule.
Dr. Dohmeier said things that can help you sleep are avoiding caffeine and alcohol because they interrupt our sleep while we're sleeping. If you're having trouble sleeping, Dr. Dohmeier said to keep your bedroom dark, no screens, and if you need it, take a low dose of melatonin.
If you wake up in the middle of the night Dr. Dohmeier said turning on the light is OK just make sure it's a warm light. She also recommends reading a book or a magazine. Something not too exciting but distracts you from the compulsive need to fall asleep. Dr. Dohmeier said the more you fret about falling asleep the less likely you are to actually fall asleep since it increases your anxiety.