Not Having Daylight Savings Time Can Affect You

Daylight Savings Time (DST) ended this past weekend, giving all of us an extra hour of sleep. Although no one denies more sleep is a good thing, there has been, and continues to be, a strong debate about the real necessity of time change every single year. Back in the 2018 California Elections, Proposition 7, titled Legislative Power to Change Daylight Saving Time Measure, gave the option to vote yes on allowing the California State Legislature a permanent Daylight Saving Time year-round, getting rid of the multiple time changes in a year. The measure was approved, with 7,167,315 votes which totalled 59.75% of the population. 

Since the proposition was successfully approved, many people believed the time change would no longer apply once 2019 came. However, all this measure did was allow California to change the dates and time for DST and establish permanent times for DST and standard time. But the debate about the real need for these two time periods is still going on strong in present day. As of today, only Hawaii and Arizona have opted out of DST out of all 50 states, but more than half of the others continue to debate on whether or not they should opt out like these two states have. Some want to keep standard time as their permanent time, while others are seeking to always be in Daylight Savings time throughout the year. Although both these times are different, they would both end the changing of our clocks twice every year. But states debating on this issue cannot seem to come to an agreement on whether to make standard time permanent or DST.

An article in US News, titled “The Daylight Saving Time Debate,” talks about the health consequences that could come with permanent DST or standard time. Dr. David Avery told the Seattle Times that permanent daylight time can actually be harmful to the overall health of a population, “morning light is more important to people's circadian rhythms than evening light, and it's also important to people with seasonal depression.” DST also lowers the amount of traffic accidents and fatalities because the days are longer and there is still light out as it gets late.

 Photo by Kelly Sikkema

When states debate the issue of standard time and DST, I highly doubt they take into consideration all aspects and consequences that would come with this major change. I was not aware that keeping one single time had the ability to impact the wellbeing of others and myself. Because of this, I think it is important to look past the personal inconveniences that DST and time change brings to each of us individuality and begin to look at what is best for the population as a whole. Phones and other technology we might have are programmed to change the time on their own, which means that all we would really have to do when DST comes around is change any wall clocks and the microwave and stove clocks in our kitchens. 

Although the debate will most likely continue between states in the United States and possibly other countries, let us continue to change our clocks until we can figure out a system that will benefit us all.