November 1st marks the end of daylight savings time or what is called “summertime”. Turning our clocks back to Standard Time is supposed to make better use of natural light. Even gaining one hour of sleep messes up our circadian rhythms because is controlled by our hormones that regulate hunger, mood, and sleep. And when that gets something different it doesn’t like it.
Changing back to standard time really messes up my sleep. I don’t seem to get one more hour and may wake up an hour earlier. And I already feel that my times are messed up from self-isolating with my husband at our end of a dead-end street. The only thing that appears to change is the color of the leaves and when the sun rises and sets. And a lot of times I’m not even sure what day it is. It’s such a weird time. This just adds to an abnormal lifestyle for me.
The times that I eat, sleep, and take my medicines will also change. The amount of natural light changes to less in the afternoons and night. I, therefore, have less light to help with my depression and PTSD. A couple of years ago I bought a Verilux lamp that I use every morning for a half-hour. I also tend to get more migraines so this light helps to lessen those too.
Every fall I try hard to change something that will help me adjust to these changes better. I think that this year I am going to put more lights on in the house earlier to help me get going better and sooner. Maybe I’ll even exercise earlier too.
What changes will you make to accommodate the changes in sleep and the disruptions that this will cause in your life?