ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Sleep to Maintain Sanity!

Updated on August 24, 2020
Priscilla John profile image

She had days where she slept for 24 hours straight, and also days where she could barely close her eyes. She's a teen alright!

We are all aware that an average person needs about 7-8 hours of sleep. Going any time below that could give a person many bad effects in the long run. I had a good sleeping pattern when I was younger around my teen years. Now, my sleep routine is a wreck. I either sleep the whole day, or I don’t sleep at all. Most of my nights have become the time I reflect on the decisions I made ages back, and I’m pretty sure everybody would agree. It’s almost like the (supposedly) peaceful time is the best time for something un-peaceful to pay a visit.

Source

What does lack of sleep do to our body?

Here’s the thing, it affects us not only physically, but mentally and emotionally too.

1. Memory issues

When we sleep, our brain rests from all kinds of thoughts and activities, forming connections that help us process and remember new information. This is also why babies sleep a lot as their cells are new and rapidly growing at that phase. Lack of sleep can negatively impact both short-term and long-term memories of a person as that time of rest is where the cells repair and actively connect. When it is not given the chance to do so, things turn against us. So, the next time you study for an exam, don’t stay up late and give your brain the rest it needs to start fresh the next day. When I discovered this information, I killed my habit of late-night studying completely. The results turned out pretty great. I could focus more and remember things better as compared to the times I forced my brain at night to stay awake by inducing caffeine.

2. Mood changes

Besides that, sleep deprivation is also the main cause of mood changes especially among teenagers who have their hormones all over the place. Sleep deprivation can make you moody, emotional, and quick-tempered. Your teenage son is behaving badly? Temper issues? Check his sleep schedule. Personally, if I don’t get enough sleep, I’ll be snapping at everyone in my way. As I was so used to studying late at night, my friends knew better than to talk to me the whole period before and after the exam till I go home and get a good sleep. Chronic sleep deprivation may lead to anxiety and depression too.

3. Affects Immune System

Our immune system is the body's guard; it helps us fight the bad bacterias, viruses, and other harmful substances present in our body. People who don't get enough sleep are more vulnerable to sickness and viruses. Lack of sleep also affects the rate of recovery every time we get sick. Ever wondered why people who are sick sleep more? When we sleep, our body's immune system releases a certain protein that also promotes sleep. These proteins are important for stress and inflammation. Some other proteins released are important to fight infections. Sleep deprivation actually reduces the production of these proteins which directly makes us less armed during the bad days.


Have You Heard of the Russian Sleep Experiment?

Let me tell you a story about the Russian Sleep Experiment. This experiment was conducted by Russian researchers in late 1940 by keeping five prisoners (enemies of the state during World War 2) awake in a chamber for 30 days using an experimental gas-based stimulant. This was before closed-circuit cameras were invented and all they had was microphoned one-way glass windows to monitor the prisoners. This chamber was stocked with books, cots to sleep on without bedding, running water, and toilet. The prisoners were also provided with enough dried food to last all five for over 30 days.

The first few days went well with the prisoners communicating with each other. They were promised falsely to be freed if they obeyed the instruction and not sleep for 30 days. For four days, the prisoners were exchanging stories of incidents of their traumatic pasts during the World War. The tone of their conversation darkened as the days passed and were suspicious on the 4th day.

The situation tensed on the 5th day when the prisoners stopped communicating with each other and began complaining of their state and reasons for being there. They started whispering nasty things against one another to the microphone in the hope to turn the favor of the scientists and accuse each other.

Four more days passed when one of the prisoners began screaming at the top of his lungs as he ran the length of the chamber with his voice breaking every minute for three hours. Even more surprising was the reaction of the other prisoners- who did not react at all! Few hours passed till the second prisoner started screaming. The other three were calm, still whispering and occasionally tearing the books supplied to them page by page, smearing them with their own feces and calmly pasting it on the windows. Then everything stopped, the screaming, whispering and tearing of books.

For the next three days, there was complete silence. The microphones were checked and were found to be working perfectly. Curious, the researchers decided to break into the chambers, something they vowed not to do, and found the prisoners in a horrifying state. There were chunks of meat all over the floor, not from the food ration, but the flesh of the prisoners.

It was a struggle to contain three prisoners as they started being aggressive and killed a few soldiers during the process and had to be shot dead. One was found already dead in the chambers, and the last one, quite terrifying, died once put to sleep. He managed to whisper a sentence before breathing his last. “We are the madness that lurks within you all, we are what you hide from in your beds every night”

“We are the madness that lurks within you all, we are what you hide from in your beds every night”

— The Russian Sleep Experiment

The results of this experiment were an unexplainable chart for the researchers. Relating back to the bad effects of sleep deprivation mentioned earlier, men could go mad up to killing a person without enough sleep. Sleep is important. It keeps you sane. This research gave me nightmares and I vowed to sleep according to my routine from then.

Having enough sleep benefits a person in many ways. To name a few, being a boost to your mental well-being, improving concentration and productivity, improve problem-solving skills, and enhance memory performance. A study in medical interns provides a good example. Interns on a traditional schedule with extended work hours of more than 24 hours made 36% more serious medical errors than interns on a schedule that allowed more sleep.

In a nutshell, good sleep is equally essential to a person as having breakfast every morning. It's okay if you can’t sleep for 8 hours. At least, a good 20mins nap in between your schedule would be sufficient to keep you energized.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 Priscilla John

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • louiseelcross profile image

      Louise Elcross 

      11 months ago from Preston

      The Russian experiment you write about was horrific. I have suffered insomnia for many years and after just 48 hours of not sleeping I can feel the impact on my mental and physical health. If I do not get sleep I struggle to manage my mental health and physical pain that I feel through fibromyalgia, arthritis and other physical problems so I know sleep is crucial to my overall health. Horrific story but thanks for writing.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://corp.maven.io/privacy-policy

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)