As daylight saving time ends, your sleep habits should stay consistent

You know the routine.

At 2 a.m. on Sunday, Nov. 4, daylight saving time ends.

And we get an extra hour of sleep.

People are advised to set their clocks back one hour when they go to sleep on Saturday night. The shift will mean it’s lighter in the morning, and darkness will come sooner in the evening.

Daylight saving time returns at 2 a.m. on Sunday, March 10, 2019.

Despite the twice-yearly time changes, new research says we need to be consistent with our sleep-wake times all of the time, or face a higher risk of heart disease. A Scientific Reports study of 1,900 older adults between ages of 54 and 93, published in September, found that those who didn’t keep regular bedtimes and waking times weighed more, had higher blood sugar, higher blood pressure and a higher risk of heart attack or stroke in the following decade.

“What they found was that there was an association between the regularity of our sleep, in terms of if there’s more irregularity of sleep, there was an increased risk of cardiovascular outcomes,” said Dr. Reena Mehra of the Cleveland Clinic.

She was not part of the study, but said in the Cleveland Clinic interview:

It’s important just to keep our routine as much as possible, in terms of that sleep-time and wake-time, and these study findings really suggest that irrespective of spring forward or falling back, as we are doing now, we should keep that consistent.”

Hawaii, American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Arizona don’t observe daylight saving time, and don’t need to change their clocks.

Proposition 7, which would make it possible for lawmakers to keep California on daylight saving time year-round, is on the Nov. 6 ballot. If passed, Prop. 7 would repeal the act approved by California voters in 1949 that requires our clocks to fall back an hour each November and spring forward an hour each March. By doing so, the Legislature would then be free to either move to year-round daylight saving time or opt out of daylight saving time altogether and remain on Pacific Standard Time — which is what Arizona, Hawaii and the commonwealth territories do.