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cheating ourselves of sleep

Stashed in: Sleep!, #health, Creativity, Learn!, Emotion, Focus!, Decisions, Productivity, Attention, Think!, science

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I believe it:

Think you do just fine on five or six hours of shut-eye? Chances are, you are among the many millions who unwittingly shortchange themselves on sleep.

Research shows that most people require seven or eight hours of sleep to function optimally. Failing to get enough sleep night after night can compromise your health and may even shorten your life.

From infancy to old age, the effects of inadequate sleep can profoundly affect memory, learning, creativity, productivity and emotional stability, as well as your physical health.

Some of the most insidious effects of too little sleep involve mental processes like learning, memory, judgment and problem-solving:

During sleep, new learning and memory pathways become encoded in the brain, and adequate sleep is necessary for those pathways to work optimally. People who are well rested are better able to learn a task and more likely to remember what they learned.

The cognitive decline that so often accompanies aging may in part result from chronically poor sleep.

With insufficient sleep, thinking slows, it is harder to focus and pay attention, and people are more likely to make poor decisions and take undue risks. As you might guess, these effects can be disastrous when operating a motor vehicle or dangerous machine.

In driving tests, sleep-deprived people perform as if drunk, and no amount of caffeine or cold air can negate the ill effects.

At your next health checkup, tell your doctor how long and how well you sleep. Be honest: Sleep duration and quality can be as important to your health as your blood pressure and cholesterol level.

Great post.  I've been trying to impress these ideas upon a friend of mine for about a year now.  I did email him the article.  It seems he appreciates the information, but it doesn't seem to impact his behavior.

No, he just thinks that getting by on as little sleep as possible so that he can get everything done is a good thing.

the belly

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