HIGH POINT, N.C. (WNCN) — North Carolinians are getting ready to fall back. Daylight saving time will end on Sunday, Nov. 5 giving people an extra hour of sleep that night.
The debate around ending daylight saving for good often comes up when it is time to move clocks forward or backward. With the debate coming up once again, researches at High Point University wanted to find out how people in the state feel about the time change.
The latest High Point University Poll found nearly a majority of poll respondents, 46%, prefer changing to year-round daylight saving time. A system with year-round daylight saving time would mean a later sunrise and more daylight in the evening.
HPU researchers say they found a similar response during a March 2023 poll when we set clocks ahead.
Pollsters found 21% of poll respondents would prefer an earlier sunrise and less daylight in the evening or changing to standard time. Another quarter said they would prefer to keep the current system of switching between standard time and daylight saving time.
“Daylight Saving Time was adopted for hypothesized energy savings during World War I,” said Dr. Daniel Hall, economist and dean of the Phillips School of Business. “The energy-saving benefits have been difficult to prove and the United States has become less energy-intense per dollar of GDP. Tenuous benefits have diminished while the coordination and switching costs have increased, and national conversations on daylight saving are taking place. For example, Republican Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida has reintroduced a bipartisan supported bill that will keep most of the health, safety, leisure, productivity and consumer benefits of daylight saving by making it year-round while removing the coordination and switching costs if it passes nationwide.”
Founding Dean of HPU’s School of Nursing Dr. Racquel Ingram says the time shift can impact the body’s natural cycle.
“Switching between daylight saving time and standard time can impact the body’s circadian rhythm, altering both physical and mental health,” said Ingram. “Specifically, there is an increased risk of sleep pattern disturbance leading to fatigue, depression, heart attacks and other issues. These health concerns are typically more prominent during the first few weeks of the time change. Therefore, advance preparation is highly recommended to adjust physically and mentally.”