Daylight Savings Time begins on Sunday, March 14th, 2010 at 2:00 a.m. This is the unofficial start of Spring and brings longer days but darker mornings to much of the United States. Accompanying the time change will be added drowsiness for many and added stress for some. The good news is the shift of daylight hours will greatly impact those who suffer from SAD or seasonal affective disorder, a form of depression that is caused by lack of daylight in the fall and winter. Those suffering from SAD will perhaps feel a slight improvement.
Dr. NIcolas Rummo, director of the Center for Sleep Medicine at Northern Westchester Hospital in Mt. Kisco, New York stated: "In general, in terms of normal sleep patterns, daylight in the morning is better than light later in the day. Remember, our circadian rhythms were set eons ago to a rhythm that didn't include daylight savings time, so the shift tends to throw people off a bit...Daylight savings time is anti-physiologic, and it's a little deleterious, at least for several days." Dr. Rummo also warned of the hazards of the time change. Rummo insists that research has indicated an increased rate of auto accidents, work related accidents, and even heart attacks in the days following daylight savings time. Rummo also warned that those living on Western edges of a time zone, and those living in Northern areas, may perhaps be more affected by the time change as they "already experience more darkness in the morning."
Benjamin Franklin started the concept of Daylight Savings Time back in the 1800's in an attempt to increase productivity. The United States has wavered in it's support of the concept. During WW1 in 1918 and WWII from 1942-1945, the U.S. government introduced then repealed Franklin's idea. In 1966 the U.S. government officially adopted the policy.