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Daylight saving time: How it can hinder health and how to cope
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Daylight saving time (DST) begins this weekend. At 2 a.m. on Sunday, most people will turn their clocks an hour ahead.
Although most people are only losing an hour of sleep, medical experts say this shift can impact one's health and wellness, especially if they are already sleep deprived.
According to the Sleep Foundation, there have been "troubling trends" associated with this time shift, including sleep problems like insomnia, as well as upticks in heart problems, mood disorders and motor vehicle collisions.
Dr. Jonathan Berg, a pulmonologist and sleep medicine specialist at Good Samaritan Hospital, agrees. However, he told FOX Business that these issues all stem back to the changes in people's circadian rhythm and the stress associated with the change.
WHY PERMANENT DAYLIGHT-SAVING TIME IS BAD FOR YOUR HEALTH, SLEEP SCIENTISTS SAY
"Our circadian rhythm is an imperfect clock that needs external stimuli such as light exposure in order to adjust it to our 24-hour schedule throughout the day," he said. "Over the course of a day, levels of hormones which affect our behavior and levels of attentiveness and arousal vary in accordance with our circadian rhythm."
Berg added: "These time shifts are associated with increased rates of cardiac events. This is likely due to the abrupt change in circadian rhythm. Circadian rhythm affects circulating levels of hormones. Heart attacks are more common in the morning hours as a result of this. The abrupt change in circadian rhythm likely affects the release and timing of certain hormones as well as increasing stress on the body. This can increase the stress on the heart, particularly in people with underlying cardiovascular disease"
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