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The Importance Of Sleeping

by Mahmut Çelik on October 27, 2020

Sleep is an essential function that allows your body and mind to recharge, leaving you refreshed when you wake up. Healthy sleep also helps the body remain healthy and stave off diseases. If we don't get enough sleep, the brain cannot function properly. Getting enough sleep is necessary for people of all ages to stay in good health. The brain and body experience significant development, and the transition to adulthood brings big changes that affect emotions, personality, social and family life, and academics.

According to sleep experts, sleep is also crucial for our health and performance. When we don't get enough sleep, we are more likely to get sick and make mistakes in our daily life. It is especially crucial for people who work in the medical field. Doctors and nurses often work long hours. When they are sleepy, they might accidentally injure a patient or even cause a patient's death. Even though most people know that sleep is necessary, they continue to deprive themselves of it. This is why it's important to acknowledge that lack of sleep is a significant problem. The consequences of sleep deprivation are too dangerous to ignore.

 

How much sleep do we really need?

According to the research;

Newborns (0-2 months) need 12-18 hours of sleep. 

Infants (3-11 months) need 14-15 hours,

Toddlers (1-3 years) need 12-14 hours,

Preschoolers (3-5 years) 11-13 hours

School-age children (5-10 years) need 10-11 hours,

Teenagers (11-17 years) need 8.5 - 9.5 hours,

Adults (18+ years) need 7-9 hours of sleep.

subway sleeping

Sleep and Teenagers

Experts maintain that teenagers need more sleep than adults. Scientific research shows that many teens do not get enough sleep. Due to this, they cannot focus on their school and social life. Most teenagers only get about 6.5-7.5 hours of sleep per night. This is a serious problem for them. They may wonder why they fail at school and get low grades. However, I don't think they consider sleep as the main reason. There are also those who do not have time to sleep. I am talking about those who are busy during the day. Some are busy doing sports, some are busy with social activities, studying or preparing for exams. They don't have time to sleep. And they go to school early in the morning with very little sleep.

Americans sleep one hour less per night on average. William Dement says the dependency on caffeine and Starbucks culture is clearly one proof that people are sleepier than before. He is absolutely right. These days, people drink too much coffee and other caffeine beverages. Most people will feel better within four to six hours. Although, later on, they will start having trouble sleeping very often. And, it may cause health problems, as I said before.

sleep deprived

Let me give an example. In 1965, a 17-year-old high school student, Randy Gardner, did not sleep for 264 hours. And that is 11 days. On the second day, his eyes lost the ability to focus and to identify objects by touch. By day 3, unhealthy changes in Gardner's emotions were observed. He was moody and uncoordinated. At the end of the experiment, he was struggling to concentrate, had trouble with short term memory, became paranoid, and started hallucinating. Even though Gardner recovered without long-term psychological or physical damage, for others losing shuteye can result in hormonal imbalance, illness, and even death.

How to fall asleep quicker

So, if you have trouble sleeping, how can you sleep quicker? I have a few suggestions for you.

You may sleep quicker by lowering the temperature. Your body temperature changes as you fall asleep. Your body cools down when you lie down and warms up when you get up. If your room is too warm, you might have a hard time falling asleep. Set your thermostat to a colder temperature between (15.6–19.4°C). That could help.

Or, you can try practicing meditation. You can search for a meditation video on Youtube. Close your eyes, relax your body, and try to focus on the video.

Similarly, you can listen to music. Not some kind of rap or rock music, I'm talking about the slowed and relaxing ones.

Get tired during the day. Do much exercise or social activities as you can. The more tired you get, the easier it will be to sleep.

Turn off all electronics. Electronics obstacles you from sleeping. Try not to spend time on your mobile devices or computers.

Read books and magazines before you sleep. Your eyes will get tired after some time. It will make you will fall asleep.

Daydream with purpose. Think of some things you want them to happen. Close your eyes, write scenarios in your head. 

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