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How Much Sleep Do You Actually Need
Tiredé We all know the feeling; irritable, groggy and exceptionally lazy. Chances are you didn't sleep enough last night, or the past few nights. But what exactly is quot;enough sleepéquot; And more importantly, can you ever quot;catch upquot; on ité While the very function of sleep is still debated by scientists, we do know that it's necessary to function efficiently and productively. After all, we spend 24 years of our lifetime sleeping, it had better be important. Researchers have tested how much is required each night by assigning groups of people to four, five, and eight hours of sleep over extended periods of time. After 14 days, those with eight hours of sleep exhibited few attention lapses of cognitive
issues; however, those with six or four hours of sleep showed a steady decline. In fact, after only two weeks, the six hour group showed a similar reaction time to a person with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.1%, which is considered legally drunk. The four hour sleepers suffered even more, occasionally falling asleep during their cognitive tests. In both groups, brain function decreased day by day, almost linearly with no sign of leveling off. Scientists have dubbed this cumulative effect as sleep debt. So can we recover from ité After a night or two of little sleep, studies show that the body and brain can fully recover with a few nights of good sleep. However, with long term sleep deprivation on the scale
of weeks to months, the recovery of cognitive function is much slower, requiring many more nights of quality sleep. On the timescale of months to years, it is unknown whether brain function can be fully repaired, or if it causes permanent damage. Paradoxically, with chronic sleep deprivation, your sleepiness or how tired you feel does eventually level off, meaning that you become less and less aware of your objective impairment over time. So how long should you sleepé Most studies tend to show that seven to eight hours of sleep is the average ideal for humans. Apart from the cognitive issues, individuals who consistently sleep less than seven hours a night have an increased risk of heart disease, obesity and diabetes,
not to mention a 12% higher risk of death. On the flip side, studies have shown that while sleeping more than eight hours does not impair brain function, it also carries an increased risk of heart disease, obesity and diabetes, and a 30% increased risk of mortality! So too much sleep may also be a bad thing. But variation most certainly exists, and our genetics play a large role. In fact, individuals genuinely unaffected by only six hours of sleep were found to have a mutation of a specific gene. When scientists genetically engineered mice to express this gene, they were able to stay awake for an extra 1.2 hours than normal mice. It turns out these short sleepers
have more biologically intense sleep sessions than the average person. Ultimately, while it's important to know the ideal average of seven to eight hours exists, let your body and brain help you figure out its own needs. After all, no one shoe size fits all. If you want to know how to get better quality sleep each night in order to conquer the hurdles of sleep deprivation, we have some tips and research for you over on ASAPThought. You can find a link in the description below to that tutorial. Thanks to Audible for giving you a free audio book of your choice at audible asap. Audible is the leading provider of audio books with over 150,000 downloadable titles across
all types of literature. We recommend the 'A Song of Ice and Fire' series, which the Game of Thrones TV show is based off of. It's kept us up through the nights and caused a lot of lost sleep! You can download this audio book or another of your choice for free at audible asap. And with a subscription you can get one free book a month, so you can read the whole series! Special thanks to Audible for making these tutorials possible. And subscribe for more weekly science tutorials!.
To Sleep Perchance to Dream Crash Course Psychology 9
Comedian Mike Birbiglia was having troublewith sleep. Though not with the actual sleeping part onenight, while staying in a hotel, he dreamed that a guided missile was on its way to hisbed, and in his dream, he jumped out the window to escape it. Unfortunately, he also did this not in hisdream. From the second floor. And the window wasnot open. This little episode cost him 33 stitches anda trip to a sleep specialist. Mike now sleeps in zippedup mummy bags forhis own safety.
The lesson hereé Sleep is not some break timewhen your brain, or your body, just goes dormant. Far from it. In truth, sleep is just anotherstate of consciousness. And only in the past few decades have we begun to really plumbits depths from why we sleep in the first place, to what goes on in our brains whenwe do, to what happens when we can't sleep. And there is a lot that science has to sayabout your dreams! Talk about weird! It's like Sigmund Freudmeets Neil Gaiman. So, even though it may seem like you'redead to the world, when you sleep, your perceptual window remains slightly open.
And kinda like Mike Birbiglia's hotel roomwindow, a trip through it can make for a pretty wild ride. But for your safety and enjoyment, I'm hereto guide you through this state of consciousness, where you'll learn more than a few thingsabout human mind, including your own. And here's hoping you won't need any stitcheswhen we're through. INTRO Technically speaking, sleep is a periodic,natural, reversible and near total loss of consciousness, meaning it's different thanhibernation, being in a coma, or in say, an
anesthetic oblivion. Although we spend about a third of our livessleeping, and we know that it's essential to our health and survival, there still isn'ta scientific consensus for why we do it. Part of it probably has to do with simplerecuperation, allowing our neurons and other cells to rest and repair themselves. Sleepalso supports growth, because that's when our pituitary glands release growth hormones,which is why babies sleep all the time. Plus, sleep has all kinds of benefits for mentalfunction, like improving memory, giving our brains time to process the events of the day,and boosting our creativity.
But even if we're not quite sure of allthe reasons why we sleep, technology has given us great insight into how we sleep. And for that we can thank little Armond Aserinsky.One night in early 1950s Chicago, eightyearold Armond was tucked into his bed by his father.But this night, instead of getting a kiss on the forehead, little Armond got some electrodestaped to his face. Armond's dad was Eugene Aserinsky, a gradstudent looking to test out a new electroencephalograph, or EEG machine, that measures the brain'selectrical activity. That night, as his son slept peacefully, hewatched the machine go bonkers with brain
wave patterns, and after making sure thathis machine wasn't somehow broken discovered that the brain doesn't just quot;power downquot;during sleep, as most scientists thought. Instead, he had discovered the sleep stagewe now call REM or rapid eye movement, a perplexing period when the sleeping brain is buzzingwith activity, even though the body is in a deep slumber. Aserinsky and his colleague Nathaniel Kleitmanwent on to become pioneers of sleep research. Since then, sleep specialists armed with similartechnology have shown that we experience four distinct stages of sleep, each defined byunique brainwave patterns.