Getting Enough Sleep Essay

1401 words - 6 pages

Getting Enough Sleep


Did you know that sleep is one of the most vital necessities of life? Laboratory animals die when they are deprived of sleep, and likewise, humans would too (Johnson 5). Many people don’t realize how important sleep is. The man who attempts to do 15 hours of work, in only 7 hours is only hurting himself. This man who stays up late trying to finish his work, believes that he is working hard, and therefore will be able to sleep hard for a little while. This is definitely not the case as he will feel less and less refreshed each morning and will feel more and more tired each day. What the public needs, is to be informed about good sleeping habits and sleeping disorders that go unnoticed. We should wake up to the importance of sleep and how the amount sleep not only affects themselves, but also society.

In 1959, The American Cancer society surveyed more than 1 million Americans about their sleeping habits. Conclusions drawn from the study showed that people who got less than 7-8 hours of sleep on average per night, had a higher mortality rate. A six year follow-up was done to the people surveyed. The results showed that men 30 years old or older that got 4 hours of sleep a night had more than double the risk of dying than men who averaged 7-8 hours. The risk was only about 1.5 times higher for women. Similar results were found in a different study of 4,713 people. Those getting 6 hours of sleep or less had a 30% higher death rate (Pressman 29). Although we can see what happens when people don’t get enough sleep, scientists are still unable to explain the function of sleep.

The amount of sleep not only affects your mortality but also your personality. Some people are by nature long sleepers, and some are short sleepers. Studies show that people who tend to sleep longer, tend to be more introverted and creative. People who require less sleep tend to be more extroverted and concrete (Pressman 25). Researchers don’t know why some people require more sleep than others, but as mentioned before, any less than six hours could be life-threatening. "Subjective attitude (mood, behavior, and appearance) is a primary factor related to sleep loss" (Johnson 33). Whether you are a long sleeper or a short one, obtaining too few hours of sleep can make one crabby and less energetic, which most people have probably experienced. Continual lack of sleep can lead people to feel depressed, deprive one of thinking clearly, and hinder the quality of work performed.

One experiment that shows significance of sleep was when Dr. Laverne Johnson and Dr. Paul Naitoh of the U.S. Navy Medical Neuropsychiatric Research Unit performed a study on airline crew members. They discovered that partial sleep loss in a way, is more damaging to a person than total sleep loss in a 24 hour period. Disruptions in sleep-wakefulness cycles were the most frequently observed sleep problems in crew members. Getting up at different times even when going to bed at...

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