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Sleep Experts Take a Stand on Daylight Saving Time

Let's do away with it, says the American Academy of Sleep Medicine
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 4, 2020 2:01 PM CDT
Updated Sep 6, 2020 6:37 AM CDT

(Newser) – Most Americans will turn the clocks back in November to mark the end of daylight saving time, and with that tradition comes another: all the griping from people who think it's a dumb, antiquated practice that should end. For the first time, however, a major panel of sleep experts has staked out an official policy position on the issue—and these experts agree that it's a dumb, antiquated practice that should end. More specifically, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine says the changing of the clocks is clearly hurting our health, reports CNN. The group, which Motherboard explains is in charge of the accreditation of sleep clinics, cites a regular uptick in motor vehicle deaths in the days after the switch to DST, along with a wide range of other health factors.

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“An abundance of accumulated evidence indicates that the acute transition from standard time to daylight saving time incurs significant public health and safety risks, including increased risk of adverse cardiovascular events, mood disorders, and motor vehicle crashes,” AASM says in its position paper, which will be published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine. Group President Kannan Ramar puts it in more succinct terms: "You have enough data now to really say that this is not good for our health," he says. "There’s no going back now.” Of course, none of that will matter unless lawmakers agree, but Ramar hopes the position paper will lend a strong voice to the call to stop the clock-shifting. For the record, the AASM prefers we stay on standard time, which begins in November. (Read more Daylight Saving Time stories.)

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