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Doctor: Daylight Saving Time Carries Health Risks

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(Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)

(Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)

CBS Chicago (con't)

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CHICAGO (CBS) – A Chicago area sleep specialist said Daylight Saving Time should be eliminated, but since that’s unlikely, he offered some coping suggestions for when clocks “spring forward” this weekend.

Dr. Muhammad Hamadeh, a pulmonary specialist who runs the sleep clinic at Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn, said losing an hour of sleep when you set clocks forward in spring can aggravate existing sleep disorders.

For those with sleep apnea, for example, giving away an hour of sleep is serious business.

“Cardiac issues, cardiac diseases like heart attacks – it affects heart failure, it affects the heart rhythm. So it does have serious consequences,” he said.

He said, medically speaking, we’d probably be better off without Daylight Saving Time. He said it hurts those who already don’t get enough sleep.

“That one hour of losing sleep will probably exacerbate the problem. It will be more sleep-deprived, and it will be harder for that individual to adjust and adapt to that change,” he said.

He figured it takes a full day to make up from the hour of sleep most people lose this time of year.

Hamadeh isn’t looking for, or expecting, an end to Daylight Saving Time anytime soon. Instead, he suggested going to bed an hour early; and avoiding caffeine and reducing stress until you’re back to a normal sleep schedule.

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