By MICHELLE CASADY
A trade you can't opt out of, without moving to Hawaii or Arizona, will take place this weekend: Gain an hour of daylight by sacrificing an hour of sleep.
Daylight saving time goes into effect at 2 a.m. Sunday, though many people set their clocks forward an hour before heading to bed Saturday night.
Dr. Scott Spencer, the medical director of the St. Joseph Regional Health Center's sleep lab, said some simple steps can be taken to ease the transition.
"Most people aren't really affected by the hour lost," he said. "Just a small minority of people have problems because of just how quickly the body can acclimate itself to such changes."
For those who may struggle to get out of bed in time for church Sunday morning, try the following:
* Reset clocks earlier in the day on Saturday.
* Adjust bedtime Saturday night by 15 or 30 minutes and do the same Sunday to incrementally adjust.
* Be especially careful if traveling through different time zones during the time change as that could leave you more vulnerable to fatigue-related accidents.
* Avoid taking naps.
College Station and Bryan Fire Departments typically use daylight saving time as an opportunity to remind residents to check the batteries in smoke alarms.
Brazos County residents who don't have a working smoke alarm and can't afford one may qualify for a free alarm. For more information, call College Station Fire Department Public Education Officer Cindy Giedraitis at 764-3712.