Puerto Vallarta, Mexico – Daylight saving time begins in Mexico on the first Sunday in April, which means you’ll need to turn your clocks ahead an hour at 2:00 am on Sunday, April 5, 2020. It’s a change of only 60 minutes, but that’s long enough to throw your sleep, and your mood, out of whack.
The general idea behind Daylight Savings Time is to make better use of natural daylight during the spring and summer months, but “springing forward” can disrupt our natural sleep cycle, which plays an important role in maintaining short and long-term health.
As the Coronavirus Pandemic (COVID-19) marches across the globe, sleep is one of the most powerful weapons against getting sick and preventing illness. It’s an effective natural immune booster, helps us fight off viruses and disease, and is a crucial boost to recovery if we do get sick.
While a good night’s sleep is by no means a cure to COVID-19, it provides a perfect window for your immune system to do some maintenance work and assess the existence of any threats, or antigens. While you are dreaming about the day that you can go outside and play, command cells are seeking out and destroying illness-causing antigens.
And, since and sleep and mood are intrinsically linked, when you are sleep-deprived, your ability to handle stress (physical, mental and emotional) and learn new skills is severely diminished. Not getting enough sleep can also lead to mood disruptions and increased irritability.
Sleep disruptions can also affect memory, performance and concentration levels – especially during stressful times, like coping with a global pandemic. Try as we might to stay positive and productive, the depressed mood, irritability, and difficulty concentrating worsens.
A good night’s sleep gives rise to better moods and clearer minds, which makes it easier to bring goals into focus and dreams within reach. It also helps us maintain good mental and physical health as we support each other and navigate our way through this current, yet temporary, crisis.
So, when you change your clocks before you head to bed on Saturday night, it’s important remember that getting enough sleep will not only help you get through these trying times, but will also help you stay healthy for a long, long time.