Sleep can’t wait

In Health & Lifestyles on September 9, 2011 at 6:38 pm

By: Drew Marshall

Unusual sleep habits may be keeping you from getting a good night's rest. Photo Courtesy of Google images

During the busy school year, it can be tough to find those sweet extra hours of sleep. Students suffer from sleep deprivation every day, even on the weekends, and it could be due to some strange habits. People all around the world find it hard to fall asleep at night, even when they have been through a tough day. The answer may be these weird habits that cause the mind and body to stay active, even when one’s body longs for sleep.

            One of the most common time-wasters is surfing on Facebook. Most people think of the internet as a good way to unwind after the day, but the computer screen actually brings your brain to attention. The bright screen can stimulate the brain, making it hard to relax and fall asleep. Also, the constant reminder of the internet can bring about other stressful thoughts, which can make it hard to calm down. Also, students have a tendency to work on schoolwork right up until they head off to bed. This is also depriving one of sleep, because the brain has a hard time transitioning from thinking to resting. This can cause uneasy stirring and then no one is happy. To solve this, try to avoid mind stimulating exercises before bed, like reading or surfing the internet.

            Some people like to exercise late in the day, maybe after dinner or after schoolwork. It can be beneficial to escape the heat or change up your workout, but it can harm your sleep schedule. The body, along with the mind, cannot transition from work to relaxation. In order to avoid this, one should exercise earlier in the day so the body can have time to lower its heart rate and prepare for the night’s rest.

            Most people would rarely blame their sleep deprivation on food habits, but that can also affect one’s sleep schedule. The stomach works like the brain, in the way that it continues to work if one eats a large meal close to bed time. Thus, late night snacks may actually bring about less sleep and not more. In the opposite way, however, the lack of food can lead to lack of sleep. The body requires food to relax and when it does not have that necessary nutrition, it can lead to hunger pangs. The pain of hunger can keep one awake during the night. To solve this, one should eat during regular meal hours and avoid late night snacks.

            Sleep can be hard to find for the American public in modern society, as many people are working to keep up in the busy world. While sometimes there is work to be done, one should never sacrifice sleep in order to complete a project. Sleep is just as important as work, since the body needs rest to perform its daily activities. If people can stop and think about their daily habits, they may be able to savor those few sweet hours each night.


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