Clocks reset to normal time: the free hour of sleep

Status: 10/31/2021 8:47 a.m.

Tonight the clocks were put back an hour. The normal time now applies again. According to a survey, this could deprive many citizens of their sleep – especially women and families with children.

In Germany, normal time applies again: On Sunday at 3 a.m., the clocks were set back by one hour from the previous summer time (CEST) to Central European Time (CET). The night became an hour longer.

With the time change, it is now light earlier in the morning and darker in the evening. Summer time was introduced in Germany in 1980. Bringing the clock forward in spring should help to save energy during the bright season, but this has little effect. In addition, the change between summer and normal time creates health problems for some people.

Every second person suffers from sleep problems after the changeover

According to a Forsa survey commissioned by the health insurance company KKH, every second person suffers from irritability or sleep problems after the time change. 24 percent are tense or tired in the following days, 26 percent find it difficult to fall asleep or stay asleep through the night. In similar surveys in 2016 and 2019, however, only 33 percent and 43 percent respectively stated this.

Accordingly, women and families with young children feel particularly stressed. More than a quarter of the women surveyed currently state that they are tired or irritable during the day. In the case of men, only one in five expresses this. In households with children under twelve, a bad mood is part of everyday life in around every third family after turning the clock because the internal clock and the daily routine are out of balance.

EU member states have not yet found a solution to abolish the time change

Stephan Lenhardt, SWR, daily news 8:00 p.m., 10/30/2021

Resolved at the end of the changeover, but EU states disagree

That is why an end to the time change has many supporters: In an EU-wide survey from 2018, more than 80 percent of the participants spoke out against the time change. In 2019, the members of the EU Parliament decided to abolish the time change – the current time change should therefore be the last.

However, the EU member states have not yet been able to agree on whether daylight saving time or normal time should apply to all of them permanently. In some countries on the edges of the Central European time zone, it would not be light until the morning in winter, while in others it would be light shortly after midnight in summer.

It could therefore take a little while before the EU states come to an agreement. And that is how long the clock will probably be turned every six months.

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