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Why a sleep expert backs daylight saving push amid COVID-19 pandemic

An international sleep expert — and lots of 3AW Breakfast listeners — have backed an idea to extend daylight saving time while Australians are stuck in their homes.

Ross and John have received several emails from listeners in recent days suggesting the return to Eastern Standard Time, which is scheduled for Sunday morning, should be delayed to avoid further disruption to our lives amid the pandemic restrictions.

Talkback callers (11-7 in favour of maintain DLS), Twitter followers (50-50 split after 500 votes) and phone poll (51-49 in favour of DLS after a record 1100 votes) were closely split when asked to vote by Ross and John.

Neurology Professor Beth Ann Malow, a Director at the Vanderbilt University Medical Center’s Sleep Disorders Division, said keeping daylight saving made sense.

Although she prefers standard time in normal circumstances, she said these strange times presented a unique opportunity.

“I think that not going back and forth is probably really smart right now,” she said.

“If we can have something not disrupting our life right now … would be a really good move.

“I personally am a fan of a standard time … all year long. I think it’s good to have more light in the morning, it wakes us up.

“However, right now, with what we’re all going through with COVID-19 … I think not switching back and forth is best for our sanity.”

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