Daylight Saving Time's Effects On Kids

Kelli Wiese
November 02, 2018 - 2:39 pm
Daylight Saving Time

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DALLAS (1080 KRLD) - It's time to 'fall back' and get that extra hour of sleep this weekend. Daylight Saving Time comes to an end this Sunday.

This can be tough for adults trying to get acclimated to the shorter days and earlier darkness. But, it can be really rough on kids.  

Dr. Michelle Carabello is a Sleep Medicine Physician at Children's Health and assistant professor at UT Southwestern.

"Kids are really creatures of habit and they do best with a strict routine. Especially with regards to sleep" says Dr. Carabello. "They do best with a strict evening routine. The same bed time every night. Shifting a schedule by even an hour can really throw off their sleep schedule."

She also says, "Our bodies are programmed to sleep when it's dark and be awake when it's light. So, getting dark earlier should help kids wind down. Artificial light has a big component and plays a big role in how kids adjust to that. So, if it's getting dark earlier but there's lots of lights on in the house and electronics are on they may not benefit from the fact that's it's getting dark earlier. So, we have to make behavioral changes as well to encourage them to get ready for bed."

When it comes to getting acclimated to the time change, Dr. Carabello says children can acclimate by fifteen to twenty minutes every couple of days. So, the hour change typically takes children about a week to get used to the different time.