Still feel like you have Jet Lag because of Daylight Savings – we have tips to help.

April 3, 2017

Spring forward, fall back – either way, it not only can affect children and their daily sleep routines, it can also take a big toll on adults. Even though the clocks change by only an hour during Daylight Savings Time, the effects are noticeable. This can be especially true for the spring change, due to losing that one hour, which typically is subtracted from time spent sleeping.

“Sleep is so important, it should be made a priority for everyone. Insufficient sleep is associated with a number of chronic diseases and conditions—such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity, depression, and more”, Dr. Howard Palay, Neurologist and Sleep Specialist, Haywood Regional Medical Center.

National Sleep Foundation (NSF) new recommendations for sleep duration range are:

  • Teenagers (14-17): Sleep range increased by one hour to 8-10 hours (previously it was 8.5-9.5)
  • Younger adults (18-25): Sleep range is 7-9 hours (new age category)
  • Adults (26-64): Sleep range unchanged - remains 7-9 hours
  • Older adults (65+): Sleep range is 7-8 hours (new age category) 

To pave the way for better sleep, follow these simple yet effective healthy sleep tips from the National Sleep Foundation including:

  • Stick to a consistent sleep schedule, even on weekends.
  • Practice a relaxing bedtime ritual.
  • Exercise daily.
  • Evaluate your bedroom to ensure ideal temperature, sound and light.
  • Sleep on a comfortable mattress and pillows.
  • Beware of hidden sleep stealers, like alcohol and caffeine.
  • Avoid using TV, tablets, phones for 1-2 hours before bedtime (the blue light emitted interferes with melatonin production and sound sleep)
  • Turn off all electronics before bed.

Thankfully, the Foundation notes you should adjust to the new time schedule naturally as your circadian rhythm catches up to your new reality. Still having trouble sleeping? Sleep Studies are offered at the Haywood Regional Medical Center Sleep Disorders Center. Registered Sleep Technologists evaluate and diagnose patients with a wide variety of sleep abnormalities and related wakeful disorders with the guidance of a board certified neurologist.

Most sleep disorders can be effectively treated once accurately diagnosed. Some conditions may require medication or other prescribed therapy while others may only require a change in daily habits or work schedule. Your personal physician can assess your situation and if necessary refer you to Sleep Services for further evaluation. If you need a primary care physician, call our physician referral line at 800.424.DOCS (3627) or visit

The sleep lab is now located at Haywood Regional Medical Center on the 7th Floor West - patients report to the Emergency Registration desk for check-in.   For more information, visit