Sleep disorder symptoms

Sleep disorder symptoms

Sleep deprivation has its upsides – Ambrose Bierce defined dawn as ‘the time when men of reason go to bed’. At its worst it can make you clumsy and depressed, like a 2yr old elephant withdrawing from crack. How does one conquer the symptoms of sleep disorder?

Some of you may be able to get by with as little as less than eight hours of sleep. The rest of us need at least eight hours to properly function throughout the day. Interestingly enough, there are some who claim that there is a sleep deprivation myth, that one really does not need about 7 – 8 hours of sleep*. This article however doesn’t address this issue, but rather on the importance of getting a better night’s sleep no matter how much sleep your body demands of you.

* (Some research points to the idea that the really important thing is not necessarily the number of hours you sleep but to ensure you’re waking up at the end of a full sleep cycle, which can take 3-4 hours and passes from theta waves to delta waves, and not in the middle of it).

Sleep is great. We all know that! Sleep deprivation can result in the following:

1.) Reducing one and a half hours of sleep for even just one night can make your alertness level go down to 32%, unless you’re very carefully practising the heroic minute. Better grab some good source of caffeine, since you’re sleeping in class and not taking all those notes that you need. Even then, too much caffeine can be bad for you; caffeine is a stimulant and those who are physiologically addicated can experience withdrawal symptoms if a day is skipped without coffee’s dark yumminess.

2.) Your thinking isn’t going to be its sharpest. Good luck with memorizing all those notes for your test tomorrow. Or remembering when and where you were meant to meet someone.

3.) You might actually hurt yourself. I once accidently cut myself and left a big gash on my hand when I had grabbed the sharper ends of a box as I was taking care of a customer at work. Being a cashier isn’t hard, but it sure wasn’t an easy job on the day I came in with no more than an hour of sleep under my belt.

When sleep deprivation becomes sleep disorder

Here are some long term problems you can face eventually if you keep incurring a sleep debt:

1.) Some kind of cardiac problem, such as a heart attack

2.) Stroke

3.) High blood pressure

4.) Mental impairment

5.) Obesity (you end up eating more food when you stay up later. Staying up later makes your body crave for more sources of energy from food.

6.) Psychological problems ranging from anxiety to depression are more likely to emerge. For me, my anxiety levels feel as if they will never stop increasing the more sleep I deny my body of. I start crying more and in the past, thoughts of suicide would actually run through my mind. (They don’t though, hence the wording of the phrase “in the past”.)

7.) Early death is more of a possibility in the future. Although no one is absolutely sure of the reason why sleep is so important, enough research suggest the body is actually repairing your body and your dreams acting as a mental clean–up process. The American Psychological Association reports that memory, concentration, and immune system can improve by just going to sleep.

8.) Did I mention that losing more sleep means increasing your chances of ending up in some sort of institution later? Yes, you can go crazy and die from the stress you experience from lack of sleep. Look at Queen Victoria’s Prince Albert as an example of what you don’t want to be – overworked and dead.

9.) For those of you worried about wrinkles and other physical signs of aging/not looking pretty, sleep helps you look younger by preventing you from getting them and other signs, such as dark colouring around your eyes. It also helps to not have an angry or tired look on your face. After all, smiles make a person rather attractive, not scowls.

10) For short – tempered people such as myself (and even for the fortunate mellow folks out there), sleep helps us to actually keep our attitudes in check. With the lack of sleep, we can be more irritable.

As adults, 7 – 8 hours is necessary for good sleep. Teens from the age of 10 to 17 need anywhere from 8.5 to 9.25 hours of adequate sleep. No matter what your age group, make sure to have a consistent schedule as to when to go to sleep. Oh, and leave work OUT of the bed. Only sex and sleep are allowed in bed, nothing else. (No, not even food. What if that food drops on your bed sheets?).

Working out during the day also can tire you out. Some also find it helpful to work out about 2 – 4 hours before bed. This also gives you a good excuse to wind down and cleanse your body by taking a relaxing, warm shower. The warm shower will loosen your muscles and help you prevent that soreness you get from exercising if you shower with the hottest temperature you can handle.

As for food, it’s okay to eat at least 2 – 3 hours before you head off to bed. Your body needs nourishment. Going to bed with an empty stomach doesn’t help you go to dreamland.

If worse comes to worse where you just go to bed late one night, there is no need for actual worry. This problem can be easily solved by going to bed early 2 or 3 nights to put your biological clock back to normal.

Sleep is good. Now stop reading this and head off to bed. Unless it’s the middle of the day, in which case head off to your chaise longue for a little recline. Life may be short but if you want to be able to have enough energy to tackle all you want to do before Heaven calls, get some sleep first. Then try our waking up tips.

Sleep quotes

Sleep is the interest we have to pay on the capital which is called in at death; and the higher the rate of interest and the more regularly it is paid, the further the date of redemption is postponed. – Arthur Schopenhauer

Without enough sleep, we all become tall two-year-olds. – JoJo Jensen, Dirt Farmer Wisdom, 2002

It is a common experience that a problem difficult at night is resolved in the morning after the committee of sleep has worked on it. – John Steinbeck

All men whilst they are awake are in one common world: but each of them, when he is asleep, is in a world of his own. – Plutarch

There are twelve hours in the day, and above fifty in the night. – Marie de Rabutin-Chantal

Photo by McNair photos

The above photo is actually an example of Victorian post-mortem photography. But we did love it so. We shall now make a vague reference to ‘the eternal sleep’…