Study says risk for heart attack increases on Monday after spring forward

While it doesn’t bother some, others have a hard time adjusting to the time change.

“It doesn’t really affect me that much I guess,” said Colorado Springs resident Cameron Cole.

Yet, student Jared Corrington disagreed.

“I wasn’t exactly well-rested,” he said.

A recent study published in Open Heart Journal says heart attacks increase by 24 percent on the Monday after we spring forward for daylight saving time. Though they don’t know the exact reason for the spike in heart attacks, they say losing that hour of sleep has something to do with it.

“There are definitely some signs that chronic sleep deprivation increases the same sort of inflammatory parameters in your blood that can lead to heart attacks,” said Timothy Rummel, Medical Director at Memorial Sleep Disorder Center.

And with most people suffering from grogginess from lack of sleep, Monday was also Sleep Awareness Day.

“The American Academy of Sleep Medicine, they actually have resources online that you can go to,” Rummel said. “Every year, kind of the Monday after it springs forward.”

But, there are ways to prepare for losing that precious hour of sleep.

“The first thing is to start early. So most people don’t start until they’re miserable on Monday morning and really what you need to do is start the process about four or five days earlier,” Rummel said. “And what you’d like to do is go to bed about 15 minutes earlier each night progressively and get up progressively 15 minutes earlier each morning instead of trying to do one whole hour in one single day.”

The time change does cause some discomfort and adjustment but does not directly cause heart attacks to happen. It’s possible that those who experience a heart attack may have already had an increased risk of doing so anyway.

For more information on Sleep Awareness Day, go to www.AASMnet.org.

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