Daylight Saving Time begins this weekend, but not everyone in the U.S. will have to set their clocks ahead on March 8. Those who do will lose an hour of sleep, but there is an upside — a little more daylight as we edge towards Spring.
According to Time and Temperature, Daylight Saving Time begins at 2 a.m. on March 8. The time change is not observed in Arizona, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
If you live in a state that observes DST, set your clocks ahead one hour before you go to sleep on Saturday night. Most smartphones, computers, and cable boxes will make the change to Daylight Saving Time automatically, but it’s likely that you will have to manually change the clocks on your microwave, stove, and in your car.
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Although Daylight Saving Time has been around for decades, people still get confused about which way they should set their clocks. Just remember to “spring forward” one hour when DST begins (second Sunday in March), and “fall back” one hour when DST ends (first Sunday in November).
Is the time change a good thing? Everyone seems to be a bit conflicted about whether or not we should have Daylight Saving Time, or do away with it altogether. While it’s nice to have just some extra daylight, especially after a gloomy winter, there are some reports that state the time change may not be good for your health.
Turns out, losing sleep is a big deal — even if it’s just one hour. Dr. Charles Czeisler tells MPR News that the time change makes a “huge difference.”
“It makes a huge difference, first of all, because of the sleep we lose that night. We cut the hour out of the nighttime, so suddenly at 2 o’clock in the morning it becomes 3 o’clock in the morning. And secondly, we have to reset our internal biological clock that controls the timing of sleep. It makes it more difficult for us to get the sleep we need, even in the following week.”
Czeisler points out that during the week that follows Daylight Saving Time, there is a 17 percent increased risk of car accidents, and a 5 percent increased risk of heart attacks.
Good or bad, Daylight Saving Time is going to happen at 2 a.m. on March 8, unless you live in the states listed above where it is not observed.
[Image: Jeff Mitchell/Getty Images]