Why Daylight Saving Time is a Disaster for Economy and Health?
Hello Friends, I am back with my favorite topic which is Finance. Today my topic is a bit different than what I usually write for all of you. The experience of last few weeks has made me write this post as I could not complete my usual 8hrs long beauty sleep.. 🙁 So, I am gonna discuss about the bad sides of Daylight Saving Time. Though the discussion is entirely based on my personal opinion and experience, however you can also relate your insight on this topic.
Being an urban worker, outdoor sports enthusiast, retail businessman, you may advocate Daylight Saving Time (DST) as you benefit from the increased light during the summer evenings. You may argue that it helps saving energy and promoting outdoor leisure activities, reducing crime and traffic accidents and thus it is good for health as well as economy. But do you know that it leaves a number of negative impacts on both our health and overall economy of the country? If you don’t, let’s have a look at this article.
What we hate about DST?
- We lose an hour of solid sleep – By flipping the clock forward to switch to DST often result in poor or too little sleep which is not a good proposition. Many people report that they don’t feel fully caught up until next weekend. It also makes them behave badly. It also creates problems to people who take their meals at particular times of the day; DST throws things out of the whack. If you used to take lunch at noon for a couple of days, your stomach may ask, “Why now? It’s only 11”.
- Daylight comes later – Early morning risers enjoy the sun, but DST whisks the light away. As a result, sun doesn’t come up before 8 am and that leaves people who bike or run outside at 6 am in the dark.
- The lost hour often result in bad health – A survey by British Medical Journal has noticed a 25% surge in heart attack on the Monday after DST.
- Buses make rounds in dark – 2-hour school delays became semi-standard during winter, but as the warmer weather comes, parents can depend on schools starting on time. However, this means that some children would find themselves waiting for buses in the dark.
- All clocks need changing – With cellphone towers, the clock on your mobile will be set automatically. But what about the clocks in your car or your alarm clock; they must be adjusted accordingly.
- Driving becomes difficult in the days after DST – Chances of accidents increase by at least 5% during the three days after DST. The same happens in case we gain that hour back too! Actually the drivers get disturbed and face problems in adjusting to the difference in light condition.
- Kids don’t want to go to bed – Daylight in the evening is a good thing, but midnight sun is not desired. Just think of those parents of toddlers who are trying to put their child to bed when sun streams through the windows.
- Energy savings is nothing but a myth – The advocates of DST state the reasons for flipping the clocks forward centers around the energy it saves. But that was true before we had started using Air conditioning. Now, people consume less electricity in the evenings, but that is offset by even heavier use in the early morning. The conventional thought is that DST helps to save energy which I don’t agree. Because, if I will be heading towards Memorial Park or Houston Center for a change in the menu of my lunch, then definitely I will go by my car, not by walking, so ultimately it will result in the increase of Gasoline consumption. So do we really save energy?
The next point is whether turning your clocks forward Sunday actually is good or bad.
Why and how flipping the clock forward Sunday negatively impacts economy?
DST means it’s time to forward your clock and deal with the hassles of adjusting your body clock. DST means it’s time to forward your clock and deal with the hassles of adjusting your body clock.
Our daily routine is managed by clocks; we start our work at a particular hour or get children to their school before the bell rings. Although the clocks change at an inoffensive time of day – 2 am on Sunday, yet human body can’t immediately adjust. Rather, most people try to adjust until Sunday night and following Monday morning which leaves them short of sleep by about 40 innocuous minutes when they go to their work on Monday morning.
Everything seems harmless until now while some studies have highlighted organizational cost stemming from economic loss. For example,
- There was a spike of about 6% in mining injuries in U.S. on Monday after the shift to DST. The economic severity of such injuries was assessed by the days of work lost due to injuries; there was about an increase of whopping 66% indicating more than 2555 more workdays lost only because of the injuries took place on that particular day.
- Workers were likely to ‘cyberloaf’ – they spent time with their computers and Internet and engaged in activities which are not related to their job at significantly higher rate on the Monday after following shift to DST than other Mondays. Also for each hour of interrupted sleep, survey respondents cyberloafed for 20% of their allocated job. So it can be said that DST and lost sleep can end up in substantial loss in productivity. Workers with insufficient sleep tend to be less morally aware, more prejudiced, more interested to participate in abusive supervision and less ethical.
Apart from the research, what we usually see,
- Farmers don’t support DST. Being a Farmer, my dad always used to tell that grains are best harvested after dews evaporate; so when the field hands arrive and leave earlier during summer, his labor will be less productive.
- Dairy farmers also complain of the time change. Cows are responsive to the timing of milking and so delivering milk earlier disturbs their body system.
- DST hurts drive-ins, theaters and top of all prime-time TV broadcast rating.
According to a recent study on economic effect of DST America loses more than $434 million per year owing to the subtle shift of clock. And unfortunately the productivity can’t be regained when fall change adds one hour to the schedules. In a nutshell, there are substantial business costs from DST.
What are the negative effects of DST on health?
Daylight Saving Time significantly affects body clock as well as health. According to different researches, DST results in increased number of heart attacks and road accidents the days following flipping of the clock by one hour in spring. Setting the clock one hour forward due to DST results in loss of one hour sleep on the Sunday morning.
Time changes cause daytime sleepiness. It changes sleep patterns that make people restless and sleepless at night.
- During ‘Fall Back’ period, people face problem adjusting to going to sleep later following the time change. With transitioning schedules after springing forward ends up in decreased sleep. Less sleep often causes depression and insomnia.
- The number of road accidents increase on the Monday following the inception of DST. Wobbly drivers driving in the dark are more likely to meet accidents & I myself is the victim of it as I lost one of my best buddies in such accident in the year of 1990, it was just 7.30am when I got a call from HPD and got the worst news. 🙁
- DST negatively impacts body’s internal circadian rhythm and molecular cycle that regulate when we feel sleepy and when we feel awake. It also regulates hour hunger and schedule of hormone production.
So, this is all what I feel personally about DST. However, before drawing my final conclusion I would like to research a bit further to know what others feel about DST. And I will definitely highlight the other aspects of DST in my next article so that you can decide yourself that whether it’s good or bad. Moreover, I would like to research further about it’s financial aspects as well and will try to find out whether there is anything positive which you can utilize in growing your finances or not. In the meantime I would request you all to come up with your valuable insights in my FB or G+ page, so that I can get a bit help in framing my upcoming article.