PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — Turning back the clock is a small change that AAA Tidewater warns could lead to major consequences on the road. That’s because, come Monday, your morning commute could include blinding sun and your drive home could be pitch black.

“Just making sure that 100% of your physical and mental focus is on driving and nothing else,” said Ryan Adcock with AAA Tidewater.

Collisions with deer go way up the week after the time change and, Adcock told WAVY, there’s a greater risk for pedestrian accidents as more joggers, walkers and bicyclists will be out after dark.

“That much more important for motorists and pedestrians alike to exercise that caution, and especially on the pedestrian side making sure that you’re making yourself as visible as possible,” he said.

Pedestrians should remember to wear reflective or light colored clothing, stay in well-lit areas and use sidewalks.

Drivers need to make sure their headlights are working at night and on cooler mornings take time to clear fogged windshield, and no matter the time of day, never drive drowsy.

The darker months can make some feel sleepier or even depressed.

“It could impact your personal life, your professional life or even your romantic life,” said Riverside family physician Dr. Stephen Woodall.

Seasonal Affective Disorder affects 10 million Americans each year and women at four times the rate of men, Woodall said.

“There’s medical treatments and then there’s the sort of non-medical treatments,” he said. “The medical treatments would be antidepressants and therapy.”

Turning on lights, especially in the morning can also help.

Daily walking, regular exercise and getting enough sleep are all great ways Woodall said to boost your mood.

The darker months can also exacerbate symptoms of depression for those already diagnosed.
If you find yourself struggling, call your doctor, and if you ever have thoughts of self-harm or suicide, call the suicide and crisis lifeline at 988.