Posted in Daylight Saving Time, Health, news

Daylight Saving Time Start May Come With Health Risks

Sunday March 10 is the start of Daylight Saving Time.  Our clocks spring forward 1 hour at 2:00 am.  However, unlike the Fall festivity in which the extra hour of sleep may improve our health, we risk a multitude of issues by losing a measly 60 minutes of sleep.

History of Daylight Saving Time

This ritual began in ancient civilizations, when daily schedules would be adjusted to the change in daylight.  Later Benjamin Franklin wrote an essay for Parisians entitled “An Economical Project for Diminishing the Cost of Light” in 1784 explaining how less candles could be used if people woke up earlier, making  more use of natures early light.



Although other countries adopted Daylight Saving Time before the US, such as Germany in 1916, President Woodrow Wilson was the first to sign it into law in 1918 to conserve coal during the  Great War.  It was eventually repealed, though a handful of states maintained it.  In 1942, Franklin D. Roosevelt, again to assist the conservation needed for the war efforts, made “Daylight Saving Time” year round, calling  it “War Time”.  After the war, however, no federal law maintained the time change and states chose to do what they wished.  The Uniform Time Law of 1966 attempted to unite the states in this effort and the law, signed by President Lydon B. Johnson, decreed Daylight Saving Time to begin on the last Sunday of April and to end on the last Sunday of October.  States had  the right to vote to exempt themselves.  By 2007, the Energy Policy Act, created in 2005 declared that Daylight Saving time begins at 2:00 a.m. on the second Sunday of March and ends at 2:00 a.m. on the first Sunday of November. Some states, including Arizona and Hawaii, do not convert to DST.

What are the risks to Daylight Saving Time start?

Now besides the groaning that occurs each week when we “lose” an hour at night of sleep, concerns have risen in the scientific community regarding health risks.  These include headaches, workplace injuries, car accidents and heart attacks.

A study from the University of Colorado a few years back found a spike in car accidents the first week after Daylight Savings Time change. Apparently drivers did worse with one hour less of sleep that those comfortable with their routine prior to the time change.

In 2014 a different study from the same university found heart attack risk to spike 25% the following Monday after the “spring forward” but fell to almost normal when the clocks fell back in the Fall.

An additional study in Chronobiology International found IVF success rates drop during this time in women, who had a previous miscarriage.

Personally the anxiety my listeners have with the one hour change makes one wonder the risk isn’t higher.  We’ve been losing hours of uninterrupted sleep for years once we allowed our smartphones into our bedrooms but a 60 minute time change…..the country falls apart.

Now with electricity, batteries, generators, and charged mobile devices the need to change the clocks to conserve energy isn’t as urgent as it once was. However, I’m not ready to suggest its demise because I really like the extra hour of sleep in the Fall.  So to decrease the risk of an ICU visit every Spring, I would suggest the following:

  1.  Prepare for the time change before it happens.  Wake up 10 -20 minutes early a few days before the change so that the one hour shift isn’t too drastic for our delicate circadian rhythms
  2. Continue your exercise each morning (and don’t skip it the Monday morning after DST) so your body gets accustomed to the adrenaline surge and you’ll be able to maintain your morning alertness despite the time change.
  3. Eat a balanced breakfast. You should be doing this as well year round but remember to include protein and complex carbs as energy sources.
  4. Make use of natural sunlight to help wake you up.  Just as we benefit from the moonlight to help us fall asleep, our body needs sunlight to wake up.  Take a short walk each morning to get some brisk exercise in and sunlight at the same time.
  5. Don’t stress about the time change. You’ll build it up bigger than it has to be and anxiety stresses the heart.
  6. Go to bed a little earlier Sunday night.

And finally, remember to change your clocks!!  Coming to work late Monday morning negates all the preparation we did the weekend before.  Personally I like to set my alarm for 1:50 am, splash some water on face to be bright and alert, and then meticulously change each clock in my house.  I know smartphones change themselves… but where’s the fun in that?



The Baby Boomer’s Guide to Online Dating




Daliah Wachs, MD, FAAFP is a nationally syndicated radio personality on GCN Network, KDWN, and iHeart Radio.



Posted in Uncategorized

Using the NFL Injury Report to predict this week’s winners

Don’t gripe.  We’ve done pretty well in season’s past.  Here we go! Picks in bold.


Thursday night BENGALS vs Dolphins – Groin and Concussions sink the Dolphins


COLTS vs Jaguars: Hamstring

PANTHERS vs Falcons: groin injury

RAIDERS vs Ravens

LIONS vs. Bears

TITANS vs Texans

PATRIOTS vs Bills: Bills report a groin injury

Seahawks vs JETS

Browns vs REDSKINS: this was tight. both had groin and hamstring injuries

BRONCOS vs Buccaneers

RAMS vs Cardinals

SAINTS vs Chargers

COWBOYS vs 49ers: appeared to tie with hamstring, but 49ers had a hip injury

CHIEFS vs Steelers

Giants vs VIKINGS: Groin and concussion injury sink the Giants

We pray that no one gets hurt and those who do recover quickly.  Here’s to a safe season of one of the best sports ever!!  FOOTBALL!!

Daliah Wachs, MD, FAAFP is a nationally syndicated radio personality on GCN Network and Board Certified Family Physician


Reviewing the NFL Injury report ( and using the Dr. Daliah methods (described below), one arrives at the following picks (winner predicted in bold and in caps):

CARDINALS vs Bills:  The Bills had a groin injury

VIKINGS – Panthers: The Panthers have hamstring injuries

BRONCOS vs. Bengals: close one but the hamstring injury among the Bengels gives it to the Broncos

LIONS vs Packers:  groin and concussion injuries hurt the Packers

RAVENS vs Jaguars :  A concussion sinks the Jaguars

BROWNS vs Dolphins: Miami’s groin injury sinks them

GIANTS vs Redskins:  Again, someone’s groin injury hurts the whole entire team

TITANS vs Raiders:  Two concussions and a groin injury can’t be ignored

SEAHAWKS vs 49’s:  San Francisco reports a concussion

RAMS vs Buccaneers:  This one’s close but the hip injury sinks Tampa Bay

STEELERS vs Eagles:  This one’s close but we have to follow the hamstring injury

CHARGERS vs Colts:  Again, tight but the Colts report a concussion

JETS vs Chiefs:  Ehinger’s concussion can’t be ignored

COWBOYS vs Bears:  Two concussions make this a Dallas win

We pray that no one gets hurt and those who do recover quickly.  Here’s to a safe season of one of the best sports ever!!  FOOTBALL!!

Daliah Wachs, MD, FAAFP is a nationally syndicated radio personality on GCN Network and Board Certified Family Physician


For years I’ve been dissecting the NFL Injury Report and predicting who would win during the playoffs and Superbowl. When you’re a doctor who loves football, its not that difficult.

So my success has prompted me to make the risky move of posting my strategy and results.  There are varying levels of theory, just like layers of the epidermis.  And each deeper layer of prediction should confirm the simpler ones.  But if I can’t scientifically deduce the winner, I wing it.

Method 1 – Number game

Let’s take for example Thursday night’s game between the Jets and the Bills.  According the NFL injury report, there were 6 injuries reported for the Jets and 8 for the Bills.  A novice may just say 6 is less than 8 so the Jets will win.  But as a physician, this is not good enough.   We need to also look at the types of injuries.

Method 2 – Anatomy counts

According to the NFL Injury report, the Jets sustained injuries to the calf, foot, shoulders and ankle.  The Bills sustained injuries to the foot, ankle, knee, shoulder, but also hamstring.  Yes, Kevon Seymor’s hamstring injury is very telling. Why?

Think about when you were playing football.  If you hurt a finger you still played.  If you sprained your knee, you toughed it out. But what happened when you sustained a groin injury.  You were leveled.  Probably couldn’t even get up.  So any injury involving the groin is physically devastating for a player, and from a psychological standpoint, the whole team.

If a groin injury specifically is not incurred and reported by the NFL injury report, then you look at the injuries closest to the groin.  A head injury is also very concerning so that will come after groin.  Hence the scale from most devastating to least in terms of injured body parts listed is:

Groin < head < hip< < glute < quad < hamstring  < abdomen < chest < knee < shoulder < calf < arm < ankle < foot < wrist < hand < finger < toe.  

The Bill’s hamstring injury is closer to the groin than any other injury hence the team wasn’t looking very good for Thursday night’s game.

If specific injuries are not listed, we can sometimes count how many did not participate in practice.

Method 3 – Colors 

In case of a tie….meaning both teams sustained equal numbers of groin injuries or subsequent proximal body parts, we look to the main colors of the Jersey.  Black, Blue, Green and Yellow will fare worse than White and Red, Brown. In medicine, Black may happen with necrosis, Blue is associated with hypoxia, Green- mucous, Yellow – gonorrhea.  White and Red are fairly routine and healthy colors in medicine (bones and blood).  Silver and Purple are colors that are fairly neutral as we usually don’t see those colors on a routine basis in medicine unless with hair.

Therefore, the color scale from most problematic to least is:

Black < Blue < Yellow < Green < Orange < Purple < Silver < White < Red.

Again this is only used if predictions cannot be made due to an anatomical tie.  Again I must stress we do not use the color method unless we are unable to predict using the NFL injury report.

With Thursday night’s game, the Jets wore white and the Bills wore blue.   But despite this method, the Bills were at a disadvantage with the hamstring injury all along.

So what will happen this Sunday?  Let’s use what we learned to predict the winners!!

(9 out of 14 not too bad……..)

49’s vs. Panthers  

3 Ankle injuries and 1 Hamstring vs. 1 Ankle Injury and 1 Hamstring

Prediction:  Panthers


Raven’s vs. Browns

I see a thigh injury for the Ravens and all the Brown’s participated in practice

Prediction:  Browns


Titans vs. Lions

2 Hamstring injuries vs. none listed.  We will have to assume that the Lions did not have such heavy weighted injures.

Prediction:  Lions


Chiefs vs. Texans

No injuries vs 1 knee and 1 calf injury

Prediction:  Chiefs


Dolphins vs. Patriots

1 Hamstring, 2 Knees and 1 ankle vs. none listed

Prediction:  Patriots


Saints vs. Giants

Two quad inujries vs. 1 illness and 1 shoulder

Prediction:  Giants


Bengals vs. Steelers

2 Ankles vs foot, ankle, knees

Prediction:  Bengals


Cowboys vs. Redskins

1 Achilles, 2 Back, 1 Groin vs. 1 Groin, 1 Achilles, 1 Rib and 1 Glute (Glute is in the tushee, devastating)

Prediction:  Cowboys


Buccaneers vs Cardinals

The hamstring injury sinks the Buccaneers

Prediction:  Cardinals


Seahawks vs Rams

1 ankle vs 2 thigh injuries

Prediction: Seahawks


Colts vs Broncos

Concussion and Hamstring vs. ankle and hip, and others

Prediction:  Broncos


Falcons vs. Raiders

The Raiders had both a groin and concussion injury. not good

Prediction: Falcons


Jaguars vs. Chargers

Hamstring and “not injury related” vs. Hamstring.  Hmm. Something’s up so….

Prediction: Chargers


Packers vs. Vikings

A concussion was incurred by a panther’s player vs a Viking’s hip injury.

Prediction: Vikings


We pray that no one gets hurt and those who do recover quickly.  Here’s to a safe season of one of the best sports ever!!  FOOTBALL!!

Daliah Wachs, MD, FAAFP is a nationally syndicated radio personality on GCN Network and Board Certified Family Physician