Voiceover: I’m sure we’ve
all had trouble sleeping at one point or another, maybe trouble falling asleep,
staying asleep or waking up or maybe you’re forcing
yourself to sleep less because you have too
much to do to lie in bed. But sleep deprivation
can be a serious issue. People who don’t get enough
sleep are more irritable and perform worse on
memory and detention tasks than people who do. So all this can be just a minor
annoyance in everyday life, imagine the long-term
implications for let’s say, airline pilots, firefighters,
security officers or the person driving next
to you on the freeway. For example, one study
in Canada showed that the Monday after the Spring time change, so when people lose an hour of sleep, the number of traffic
accidents increases sharply compared to the Monday
after the Fall time change when people get an extra hour of sleep, the number of accidents decreases sharply. So that’s just one example,
but sleep deprivation also makes people more susceptible to obesity. When you’re sleep deprived you’re
body produces more cortisol which is a hormone that tells
your body to make more fat. You also produce more of the
hormone that tells your body you’re hungry, so you end up
eating more and turning more of what you eat into fat which
can contribute to weight gain. And finally sleep deprivation
can also increase your risk for depression and one theory
about this link is that REM sleep helps your brain
process emotional experiences, which in turn helps
protect against depression though we’re still not
entirely sure about this link. Most people, now most people
experience sleep deprivation at some points in their lives, but the good news is
that most people can get back on track by getting a
few nights of good sleep, sort of paying back your sleep debt. Your next question might be then, “How much sleep is enough sleep?” That’s kind of a hard question to answer, but most adults need
about 7-8 hours of sleep, but the exact number varies
by individual and by age. Babies need a lot more sleep,
for example, than older adults often sleep less than 10 or 8
hours without severe detriments. Again everyone has trouble
falling asleep at some point, but people who have persistent
problems in falling or staying asleep have a more serous
sleep disorder called insomnia. There are various medications
that can help people fall asleep, but taking
them for too long can result in dependence and tolerance,
which is if a person continues to rely on the
medication then their body will get used to it and they’ll
eventually need more and more to get the same affects. Now, that can often be a
bad thing because there are side effects to drugs, but
so treatment for insomnia often involves psychological
training as well as or sometimes instead of medication and some lifestyle changes
might also be necessary. For example, exercise regularly
but not right before bed or spend some time just
relaxing before bed and these can people with insomnia. On the other end of the
spectrum is narcolepsy, which is a disorder when people can’t help themselves from falling asleep. So about 1 in 2,000 people
suffers from narcolepsy and most of the time people
with narcolepsy will have these spontaneous fits
of intense sleepiness occasionally lapsing into REM sleep and these fits last about five minutes and can occur really any time. Although the cause of narcolepsy
is still under investigation, there are indications that it’s genetic and it’s linked to the absence
of a certain neurotransmitter that helps with alertness suggesting that neurochemical interventions
may help some people overcome this problem. A more common sleep
disorder is sleep apnea, which affects about 1 in 20 people. This one is a little scary
because people who have apnea are really unlikely to be aware of it. What happens is that people
stop breathing while they sleep. After about a minute of not breathing, your body realizes you’re
not getting enough oxygen and you wake up just long
enough to gasp for air and then fall back asleep
without really being aware of what happened and
this can actually happen as many as hundreds of times each night, which is a lot and because
you’re constantly drifting kind of between sleep and wakefulness, you don’t really get enough
of your deeper stages of sleep so this prevents you from
going into the N3 stage or the slow-wave sleep. Snoring can be an
indication of sleep apnea, so if you’ve ever been told that you snore and you often feel fatigued
in the morning even after what you think is a full
night sleep then you might be one of the 1 in 20
people with sleep apnea, but it’s very treatable so don’t worry. Sleep walking and sleep talking
are the last sleep disorders we’re going to talk about. Like narcolepsy, these
are mostly genetic and they occur during N3 stage
sleep and are usually harmless as long as you don’t walk
into a dangerous situation or reveal any deep dark secrets. Sleep walking and talking occur
more frequently in children, partially because children
experience more N3 stage sleep than adults, but as you grow
these nighttime adventures become much less frequent.

Articles Tags:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *