Daylight saving time experts are now saying that the practice of moving clocks an hour ahead is more dangerous than helpful to most Americans. If that’s the case then why is the country still practicing it?
According to Reuters, some experts on the matter are saying that the practice of daylight saving time can be detrimental to a person’s health and their productiveness.
American innovator and inventor Benjamin Franklin first proposed the practice of daylight saving time in 1874, when he said that Parisians could save up on their use of candles by forcing people to wake up earlier than usual in the morning.
Another major proponent of DST was New Zealander George Hudson, whose passion for collecting insects motivated him to propose the practice of moving clocks an hour ahead because it gave him enough time to study little critters while there was still plenty of sunlight.
Since then, the practice of moving clocks an hour ahead was for economical purposes, and recreational ones, as well, but scientists these days are saying that the health of people is at risk when they’re forced to adjust their sleep schedules according to daylight saving time.
Dr. Amneet Sandhu, a cardiology fellow at the University of Colorado, studied the effects of daylight saving time on patients and he discovered that moving the clock an hour ahead at the start of the DST showed that the rate of heart attacks increased.
In his study, Dr. Sandhu examined 42,000 hospital admissions in Michigan, and according to him, an average of 32 people suffered from heart attacks on any given Monday.
But, when he examined the patients more closely, he discovered that after the daylight saving time was implemented, which is always on a Sunday, there was an increase of eight people suffering from a heart attack the following morning.
“Our study suggests that sudden, even small changes in sleep could have detrimental effects,” Dr. Sandhu said.
Experts are saying that more people are likely to suffer strokes, or even get into car accidents after DST has been implemented.
Productivity in the workplace suffers as well when daylight saving time is observed, according to experts, which may dispel the notion that this practice results in higher production in offices or factories.
Not only are office workers affected by DST, but judges’ performance can be affected as well.
In Reuters‘ report, they said that federal judges took a longer time handing out sentences after DST was implemented, compared to when they were still working under normal time.
Another supposed advantage of daylight saving time that is now being debunked by experts is the thought that it saves energy.
During Benjamin Franklin’s time, it was more obvious that DST could save “energy,” seeing that most people used candles at the time. But in modern times, it’s not so easy to see that DST is still saving energy, and according to experts, it’s no longer the case.
According to Alabama News Center, studies have shown that the practice of DST didn’t help save energy, as it was discovered that people used more electricity after it was implemented.
With several indications that daylight saving time is not as beneficial as people used to think, there is now a growing demand to stop using the practice. But according to experts, it may not be as easy as some may think.
Not all Americans are in agreement that DST is detrimental, especially those in California, where summer evenings are much more cherished by many when there are more hours of sunlight for them to stroll in the park.
According to Mercury News, Californians are arguing their case that daylight saving time should be implemented because moving their clocks an hour ahead provides them more daylight to spend enjoying their spare time, such as walks in the park and watching their kids play little league baseball.
Jeff Canter, who manages Santa Teresa’s Little League, says that most parents love DST because it gives them enough time to get off work and head out to the baseball park to watch or even help out in their children’s games.
So despite the apparent health risks and almost non-existent effect on energy consumption, some people are willing to contradict the findings of daylight saving time experts all because for them, there is no downside to this ancient practice.
[Featured Image by Charlie Riedel/AP Images]