So daylight saving time has come and gone and you're feeling a bit groggy, huh? You don't just have to grin and bear that fatigued feeling. Here are a few ways to help mitigate the effects of the time change:
* Avoid naps: "If you feel sleepy the day after the change, try to resist taking a nap because this will reduce the amount of sleep pressure present at bedtime and can create longer term sleep problems. If you must nap, keep it to 15 to 20 minutes, ideally in the late morning," Alfano said.
* Seek out sunshine: "Make sure you get plenty of sunlight on the morning after the change. Light has potent effects on our internal body clock and will help you feel less tired," Alfano revealed.
* Watch your diet: "Avoid foods and beverages that will keep you up, such as caffeinated beverages, chocolates or alcohol at least three hours prior to bed," Ash said.
* Set your kids up for success: "If you have kids at home, make sure they don’t leave any work to be completed in the morning before school starts as their brains will be in a fog — or fully asleep — in the early morning," Krieger suggested.
* Avoid exercising too late: "Moderate-to-high intensity exercise should be performed earlier in the day, as late-night exercise can inhibit a good night’s sleep. During exercise, the sympathetic nervous system is activated, and when this occurs close to bedtime, it may also affect subsequent sleep propensity," Mark Aloia, Ph.D., global lead for behavior change at Philips Healthcare, told TODAY.
* Reduce screen time: "Light from a device can affect one’s circadian phase. If it’s nearing bedtime, our phase is shifting toward sleep and exposing ourselves to too much light at this time can result in trouble falling sleep. Screen time is also harmful for adequate sleep if the content we’re viewing is activating and anxiety provoking, which can interfere with emotions and interrupt sleep," Aloia said.