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Tuesday, September 02, 2014
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Published: Saturday, 3/8/2014 - Updated: 5 months ago

Spring forward is the only spring we see

Move clocks 1 hour ahead, willingly or not

BY JANET ROMAKER
BLADE STAFF WRITER
Franz Fulkerson, above, and his father Frank are there when the yearly effort to move clocks forward in the spring leads to a rash of service calls to Fulkerson Jewelers & Clock Shop in Toledo. Franz Fulkerson, above, and his father Frank are there when the yearly effort to move clocks forward in the spring leads to a rash of service calls to Fulkerson Jewelers & Clock Shop in Toledo.
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Tick, tock, tick, tock.

If you seem to be dragginnnngggggg during these days, weeks, months of deep freezes, record-setting snowfall, subzero wind chill, a slew of snow days, and near constant caffeine cravings, well, just wait until this weekend.

Consider this your wake-up call.

Here comes the only spring we’ll experience anytime soon.

Precisely at 2 a.m. Sunday, it’s time to, say it together now: “Spring ahead, fall back.”

RELATED: Time change ends Nov. 2

Indeed, when clocks spring ahead an hour, many people just want to fall back and scrunch deeper under the blankets.

To them, the new timeline is no bed of roses.

But, we’ve heard, time waits for no one.

We gain that hour back in November.

The switch to daylight-saving time prompts a rash of telephone calls to Fulkerson Jewelers & Clock Shop from folks who have knocked their clocks out of kilter in attempts to adjust them by an hour, said Frank Fulkerson, a shop co-owner.

His son, Franz, also a co-owner of the Toledo shop, said problems erupt from moving the hour hand out of sync with the clock’s chimes.

The Better Sleep Council has compiled these tips for surviving daylight-saving time:

Sleepy? Take a quick nap. If you feel sleepy after the change to daylight-saving time, take a short afternoon nap — no more than 20 minutes.

Commit to at least seven, if not eight, hours of sleep. The average adult needs 7-8 hours of quality sleep each and every night. Plan for it by counting back the hours from your wake-up time.

Keep regular sleep hours. Make sleep a priority by keeping consistent bedtime and wake-up schedules, even on the weekends.

Exercise during the day. Even moderate exercise, such as walking, can help you sleep better. Just make sure you don’t work out within two hours of bedtime.

Avoid caffeine and alcohol before bed. Alcohol and caffeine, which is found in chocolate and many soft drinks as well as coffee and tea, can interfere with sleep habits. Tobacco smoking close to bedtime also compromises sleep quality.

Eat light at night. Finish eating at least 2-3 hours before bed. Eating too close to bedtime can interfere with sleep quality.

Relax before bed. Create a bedtime ritual that is relaxing. Experts recommend reading a book, listening to soothing music, or soaking in a hot bath or shower.

Create a sleep sanctuary. Transform your room into a haven of comfort and relaxation. Make sure your room is cool, quiet, and free of distraction for the best possible sleep.

Evaluate your mattress and pillows for proper comfort and support. If your mattress is seven years old or older, it may be time for a new one. In general, pillows should be replaced annually.

“Usually if they describe the clock, and tell us the make, we have a clue on how to correct it,” Frank said.

Fixing a clock by phone can be tricky, but typically shop employees solve the issue and time marches on.

Getting clocks set correctly seems more important to callers than losing or gaining an hour of sleep, said Mr. Fulkerson at the business where five generations have served customers since 1954.

Some people focus more on the timeline; sleep studies reveal some people would pay more than $100 to get that extra hour of sleep back.

Tales abound about negative results of daylight-saving time. Sleepy people step on cats. They shower with their underwear on. They put pepper in their Jell-O, they say good-bye instead of hello.

“I feel groggy on Sunday and Monday and the rest of the week after we spring ahead. I don’t seem to get my sleep rhythm clicking again until we fall back an hour,” said a Toledoan who declined, for obvious reasons, to give his name, fearing his bosses would catch him catnapping at his workplace.

During our winter of discontent, sleep experts are sounding the alarm and provide spring-ahead survival lists.

Follow the tips and perhaps, come next week, you won’t be tempted to repeatedly smack the snooze button. Or toss the clock and watch time fly.

We live in a society of debt, sleep debt. Many people fail to get the recommended seven or eight hours of nightly sleep.

In an article titled “Insufficient Sleep Is a Public Health Epidemic” posted on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Web site, insufficient sleep is described as an important public health concern.

Each time you fail to get enough z-z-z-z-z’s, you add to your accumulated sleep loss. As a result, you can feel sleepier and less alert at times.

One expert tip to help you deal with the time change: Keep your bedroom cool.

Ha! We scoff. During this cold-wave winter, all rooms are cool, thank you very much.

And get this: the Better Sleep Council contends some of us are depriving ourselves of sleep on purpose. Sleepless in Seattle. Drowsy in Dallas. Tired in Toledo.

We consciously squander opportunities for more rest. Note: “bedraggled” has the word “bed” in it for a reason.

Sleep time slips away while we conduct urgent business: digitize your dollars into Karma Koin; update Facebook, take a teeth-flossing selfie, view YouTube. Ohmygosh. Adorable kitten pawing at yarn. Furball puppy tussling with baby rattle. Young lady feeding a bajillion bunnies. That last one was particularly precious, wasn’t it?

Other alternatives preferred, per survey results, to sleeping an extra hour: relaxing, having sex, visiting with family/​friends, or exercising.

Advantages and disadvantages of daylight-saving — not savings — time have been cussed and discussed for decades.

Kids go to school in the dark in March; kids get extra time to spend outdoors with parents in the evenings.

Drowsy motorists cause crashes; fewer crashes occur because it is lighter later in the evening.

Another pro/​con: Golfers get to spend extra time on the greens; golfers get to spend extra time on the greens (Tees off some. Others, not so much).

And still, it’s not yet Sunday, but already winter weary residents whimper: We want our hour back.

Contact Janet Romaker at: jromaker@theblade.com or 419-724-6006.



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