The clocks go back on Sunday 29th October 2022 which means that if you wish to wake up at your usual time on Sunday morning, you will have to set your clock back by one hour on Saturday evening. The clock change marks the end of British Summer Time (BST), and from this point, the days start to become darker and shorter.
People often experience a slump post-clock change, resulting in a decline in mood, energy and motivation. This is often due to the absence of strong morning light cues, which ordinarily signal the pineal gland to stop producing the sleep hormone melatonin. These dark mornings, paired with insufficient light exposure during the day, can negatively impact our well-being but luckily for us, it doesn't have to be this way!
Sleep expert and chronobiologist at the world-leading Surrey Clinical Research Centre, Dr. Victoria Revell, has put together her top tips for better sleep which will allow us to feel more energised post-clock change.
Keep a regular sleep/wake schedule
"Getting up at the same time every day - even on weekends - is really important for your sleep cycle; even more so than having a set bed time you stick to... though that's a good idea too. If you get up later than normal, your body clock begins to drift out of its set routine, which makes it harder for you to return to your weekday wake-up call after a holiday or even just following a weekend."
Use a wake-up light
"Exposure to morning light provides a cue to the internal clock and ensures it remains synchronised to the 24-hour day. The lack of morning light in winter can result in the body clock drifting to a slightly later time which makes it difficult to wake up and get up for work or school at the required time. Using a wake-up light - or a bright lightbox shortly after you get up - will prevent this from happening and help you to be ready for the day ahead."
Use a lightbox during the daytime
Dr. Revell suggests getting outside whenever possible to make the most of the daylight which you need to provide a clear daytime signal to the clock: "It's hard to come by so you have to grab it when you can. Even if that means just going out and walking around at lunch, a sunrise alarm to wake you up or a lightbox on your desk at work when you start to feel the afternoon slump. It's amazing what light can do to change the way you feel."
Avoid bright light two hours before bed
"It's something that's getting worse with so many people using back-lit screens", Victoria says "but bright light before bed confuses your body by signalling that you should still be active. This light will increase alertness and could delay your internal clock, making it hard to fall asleep and wake up the following morning. If you can, dim the lights for an hour or two before bedtime and avoid looking at screens for too long."
So, sticking to a regular wake-up time (even at weekends!) and introducing light signals into your daily routine when daylight hours are getting shorter, can provide an effective solution to clock change blues. Lumie offers a range of high quality wake-up lights which simulate sunrise and sunset, as well as energy-boosting lights which are ideal for use during the day. Let us know how your Lumie products are helping you to prepare for clock change!