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Sleep Deprivation — Somnambulists of the World, Unite!

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posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 06:02 AM
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Having just received the following in a U2U it got me thinking:


I had not intended to spend as much time as I have today in this site, but that thread compelled me to stay with it.

I suspect this is a common affliction. The issues arouse our passion, and we've just got to stick with it, no matter what the time of day.

But what of the effects of this phenomenon? There's got to be an awful lot of lost sleep on the back of all this heated discussion, and as we all know this can have a seriously detrimental effect on you. And it's not just ATS that can keep us away from that pillow...

Yet while some claim to can cope well with just a few hours' sleep, others (such as myself,) are at a loss without a good 7-8 hours.

The question is to what degree are you affected? It is very difficult to assess one's performance objectively, as —somewhat similarly to the effects of alcohol— once your judgement has been impaired by lack of sleep you can never be fully aware of its full impact...

This opens a huge can of worms. Potentially everything from work to play to relationships may be suffering: quality of life itself. And any of these factors may be sufficient to lead to a downward spiral in which every area of life is eventually affected.

And if we're not fully aware of the impact ourselves, who's to say how much better life could be if only we got more sleep.

So: how do you think it affects you? How much of a problem is this in modern society? Can it really be measured at all (in a quantifiable manner)?

On the other hand, do some perhaps function at a higher level when running on the edge of their nerves (say at 2 o' clock in the morning)? While others linger in the land of Nod, are you typing away, matchsticks over your eyes, penning your opus magnus?

And are there really two camps — or is it just wishful thinking on the part of those who haven't got the willpower to hit the sack? Alternatively, are some things just downright worth it? You may have lost your job, your health and the love of your life, but hey, it was worth it.




posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 06:28 AM
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I get an average of four hours sleep a night, sometimes less. After a week of getting these four hours my body clock is totally messed up and i often have to stay up for a whole night and then i struggle to sleep until early hours the next morning. I will state now that i dont do this with any help from drugs etc.

If i get upto eight hours or more sleep i often feel a bit lethargic, i cant get myself motivated. I work much better having these four hours, i dont know why or how this is. Even my missus will tell you im a much easier person to be with when im on my 'up all night' night.

I know people who cant manage without eight hours sleep, i am not one of those. I once worked a full 57 hour week and only had about 17 hours of sleep myself.

I am most awake during the early hours, in fact if i'd taken my exams during these hours i would of sworn that i'd of done better. Maybe it's due to the time we're born at or something that stems much further back than that, almost as if it was a gene passed onto us from ancestors or something.

I have noticed that ATS has the better debates during the early hours (UK time), but my problem was with me long before i even visited ATS.

CaF



posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 07:08 AM
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reply to post by Catch_a_Fire
 



If i get upto eight hours or more sleep i often feel a bit lethargic, i cant get myself motivated.

Interesting. That's how I feel after 9-10 hours sleep. Much more than that and I might as well just go to bed...

There's no doubt there is such a thing as a body clock. I can't claim to be an expert — but it seems all of us are immensely affected by it.


I get an average of four hours sleep a night, sometimes less. After a week of getting these four hours my body clock is totally messed up and i often have to stay up for a whole night and then i struggle to sleep until early hours the next morning. I will state now that i dont do this with any help from drugs etc.

I wonder whether this stemmed from a particular point in your life? Could it be that your natural rhythm has effectively been lost? On a purely intuitive level I can't help wondering whether there might be a more natural remedy than prescription drugs. Perhaps we can get some advice on relaxation techniques, activities, etc. that help maintain/restore the natural rhythm?


I am most awake during the early hours, in fact if i'd taken my exams during these hours i would of sworn that i'd of done better. Maybe it's due to the time we're born at or something that stems much further back than that, almost as if it was a gene passed onto us from ancestors or something.

Intriguing thoughts. I could say the same, to a degree, (pardon the pun). It does seem we have a particular point/points during our waking hours at which we reach 'peak performance'.

I wonder whether a healthy, balanced sleep pattern enables people to maximise those peak periods and minimise the troughs. (The alternative would be that some people just cope better than others to achieve greater consistency.)

I can't help wondering whether these issues actually determine the effectiveness/productivity/impact of a person's entire life, to a degree — though I wouldn't want to push this too far as the contemplative, intellectual and (nowadays) even social aspects of life are not necessarily negated by physical lethargy.

...Which leads to another question: is it possible to entirely delineate sleep-related physical and mental lethargy? Can you experience one without the other? And if so, is that yet another variable between different people, or in fact a dictum that we all share to the same degree?



posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 07:12 AM
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I too function best when my sleep is limited to no more than six hours, and often times is is just four hours a day. However, there are times when my body demands more sleep, but I will also feel lethargic if I got eight hours or more in sleep.

I used to struggle with "insomnia" where I just couldn't get to sleep when I needed to, and too many times was forced to either go to work without the benefit of any sleep, or just a few hours sleep. This would lead to a long day, where I would finally return home, and crash and burn, only to go through the whole cycle the next day. I no longer struggle with insomnia because I don't work for other people, and my schedule is now much more flexible. I mean, I do have clients, and at times, I have to work on their schedule, but it is not a constant expectation where I am stuck lying in bed praying for sleep.

This has led me to believe that insomnia is a symptom of time schedules imposed upon people who are not attuned to that schedule. When my schedule working for other people was that of late afternoon or evening, I rarely suffered through insomnia, but when I was expected to be at work by 6am or 9am, the problems with insomnia would begin. Usually, my body seems to respond to the sun rising, as if I were a vampire, and once the sun has risen, it is time for me to go to bed, and I will usually wake up by 10:30 am or the crack of noon, depending upon the effort I put out the day before.

Every now and then, for whatever reasons, my schedule will adjust, and I begin going to bed earlier, and rising earlier. Usually this is when I am more active in outdoors activities, but sometimes, it will happen just because and for no other reason that I am aware of.

Frankly, I find sleep an intrusion on life. I once read a study that people who live on 8 to 10 hours sleep live longer than people who live on 4 to 6 hours sleep, but in terms of years. Mathematically speaking, those who were living on 4 to 6 hours of sleep, assuming they were productive, got more hours out of life than those who lived longer with 8 to 10 hours sleep. So, it is a trade off, I guess. If you really like to sleep, then the extra years in longevity is a perk. If you don't like to sleep, the loss in years, could also be seen as a perk. As the saying goes; "I'll sleep when I'm dead."



posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 07:19 AM
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JPZ Ithink you covered that very well...
I use brain wave sync to help stabilize when I have to adjust...

ATS does keep me up some nights though..
lol
luv to read and write and argue I guess....



posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 07:46 AM
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I put my problem down to Insomnia because no matter how hard i try to fall asleep, i just can't. It can be frustrating but now i just go to bed when i know i will sleep.

When my kids were babies it was an almost perfect situation because i was always awake for the night feeds and i could let the missus catch up on her well deserved sleep.



posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 07:50 AM
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reply to post by Jean Paul Zodeaux
 


Although this is only anecdotal I can fully relate to your hypothesis that insomnia is related to an artificially imposed sleep pattern. (I too have always functioned best after noon — which means a normal 9-5 job is not ideal. Breaking out of the straightjacket can certainly be very helpful.)

Interesting you should raise the issue of the effect of outdoor activities. The fact they are no longer necessarily an integral part of people's lives also hints at the possibility it is an unnatural lifestyle that may be at the root of much insomnia. I suspect farm workers are not great sufferers.


I once read a study that people who live on 8 to 10 hours sleep live longer than people who live on 4 to 6 hours sleep, but in terms of years. Mathematically speaking, those who were living on 4 to 6 hours of sleep, assuming they were productive, got more hours out of life than those who lived longer with 8 to 10 hours sleep. So, it is a trade off, I guess.

That's really got me thinking. I've often been told I look a lot younger than I am. It happens constantly.

I always assumed it was either because a) my father told me we have a history of longevity in the family (+ I read those who look younger tend to live longer) b) because I need (& generally get) about 8 hours' sleep or c) because I have never drunk alcohol* or smoked, etc.

Now you (& Catch_a_Fire) have got me wondering whether it's more subtle. Perhaps the Circadian rhythm is passed down to us in our genes; we then adopt the inherited sleep pattern, which in turn affects longevity...

The playoff between hours→years spent physically asleep is rather philosophical. What's best: to be fresh, relaxed and effective, or manically attuned to the moment, razor-sharp and living off your nerves (and perhaps powered by caffeine)?

It looks like modern man tends towards the latter. But from what you say there is also a grey area whereby we can choose to break away from the straightjacket of modern life but still prefer only a few hours of sleep.

The fact you still need to catch up suggests you've deliberately, and somewhat unnaturally, chosen total 'waking hours' over 'total years alive'.




(*OK, maybe three or four ¼ glasses a year at special occasions.)



posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 08:07 AM
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reply to post by pause4thought
 


I agree that this waking life is a choice and even perhaps unnatural. If there was not electricity and artificial light, would I be up until the crack of dawn? Probably not. However, I have always been told I look far younger than I am, and I do smoke. I don't drink much, maybe around the same as you do, (I can't stand the hangovers). Also, you are assuming that only those who get 8 or more hours of sleep are fresh and effective, but as I and another have told you we are more fresh and effective with less sleep and struggle with lethargy whenever we get more than 4 to 6 hours, so maybe it is not so unnatural. Although, the best way to cure a hangover is a bit of the hair of the dog, and the surest way to avoid hangovers is to drink regularly and build up an immunity to the toxins, so maybe that is what the lethargy is, a sleep hangover.

Ever since I was a child, I have hated going to bed. Always felt I was missing out on something. That said, the sun is coming up, or has been up for a little while now...better get to bed before I turn to ash. Thanks for the great thread, I will see you in the evening after I've fed. Hee hee hee.



posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 08:38 AM
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I believe Sleep Deprivation is a significant issue among many people living in today's modern world. There are people who seem to cope fine whether they have 4 hours sleep or 8 hours sleep but they are a minority. My own personal experiences have lead me to believe that having a decent sleep (full 6 hours at minimum, 8 on average) increases the likelihood that I will have a productive day.

I used to suffer from Insomnia to a point where my life was being made unpleasant due to feeling constantly fatigued. I have been on medication that helps me sleep for about 5 years now and I have noticed a major difference in my capacity to concentrate and problem solve. It is not that the medication has increased any of my capabilities; rather, it is that they have helped ease the barriers that used to prevent me from having a decent sleep. (Which most "normal" people don't seem to have to deal with.)

If you notice family or friends that might be suffering from sleep deprivation, tell them to sleep more! If they don't believe you, encourage them to put aside one night where they can get a full 8 hours sleep and let them tell you how they feel the next day. I bet most will notice quite a difference.

[edit on 17/7/2010 by Dark Ghost]



posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 08:43 AM
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My sleep schedule is ridiculous lol.. First of all, im tired and ready for bed when i know i have things to do, BUT when it comes time for bed im wide awake. I dont know what to call this, and I quit taking sleep aids awhile ago, maybe i need them...



posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 08:43 AM
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reply to post by Dark Ghost
 





I have been on medication that helps me sleep for about 5 years now and I have noticed a major difference in my capacity to concentrate and problem solve.


Dear God! I am sorry my good friend, but 5 year sleep cycles is just too long! Maybe not Rip Van Winkle long, but that is a long time to sleep in one cycle.



posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 08:45 AM
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reply to post by Jean Paul Zodeaux
 



I have always been told I look far younger than I am, and I do smoke...

Well there may be other possible factors. I've also wondered about whether keeping very fit may have contributed to a youthful look. Perhaps even the way I trust the Man Upstairs in a crisis. But evidently we agree a balanced sleep pattern, appropriate for the individual, is likely a big factor too.


...we are more fresh and effective with less sleep and struggle with lethargy whenever we get more than 4 to 6 hours...

I noticed you said you got lethargic with more than 8 hours, but missed the strong hint more than 6 leaves you well below parr. I have to admit, I know where you're coming from. I've experienced that as well but, here's the crunch: I don't experience quite the same relaxed temperament after, say, 6 hours, so I consciously chose a perhaps less than optimal sleep pattern were mental prowess the highest priority.


Ever since I was a child, I have hated going to bed. Always felt I was missing out on something.

I've experienced that as a result of a particular anticipation. However I also regard a good night's sleep as a wonderful gift. (And sometimes something to look forward to!)

G'night. Sleep tight.


[edit on 17/7/10 by pause4thought]



posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 08:48 AM
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Originally posted by Jean Paul Zodeaux
Dear God! I am sorry my good friend, but 5 year sleep cycles is just too long! Maybe not Rip Van Winkle long, but that is a long time to sleep in one cycle.


Haha, the cycle is not as "fixed" as you probably imagine. My hours of rising and heading to bed have changed drastically. Although, over the last few months I have been rather consistent!

Just wanted to add that I have never been much of a morning person. I feel much more "awake" from afternoon to the early hours of the morning. I have always battled to rise early, a task that has been made even harder with medication



posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 09:01 AM
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reply to post by Dark Ghost
 



My own personal experiences have lead me to believe that having a decent sleep (full 6 hours at minimum, 8 on average) increases the likelihood that I will have a productive day.

I used to suffer from Insomnia to a point where my life was being made unpleasant due to feeling constantly fatigued.

Sleep is just so underrated. Quality of life is frankly impossible without quality shut-eye.

I found what Catch_a_Fire said thought-provoking:


...no matter how hard i try to fall asleep, i just can't...

I wonder whether the trying is the problem.

Another factor is perhaps having an overactive mind when going to sleep. From experience it seems like a recipe for a dream-filled night rather than a good, solid deep sleep that provides total rest and preparation for a new day.

Yet they say dreaming performs a vital function. Maybe a lot hangs on the relative balance of the type of sleep we get. Worth investigating.



posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 09:07 AM
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Guys! You need to get your derriere's in the bed!

The "unseen" benefits are also important.


insomnia may be linked to diseases like diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. Prolonged lack of sleep even causes premature-aging. Sleep is the time when the body renews and rejuvenates itself; it is a time of rebalancing, detoxification, and the re-booting of the immune system. Cortisol, a natural anti-inflammatory, is produced during the day and prevents natural cell repair from occurring. During sleep, cortisol levels are lowered, allowing normal growth and repair to take place. Melatonin, another body hormone, is released at night, and works to fight against abnormal cell growth.

From Ezine Magazine "The effects of Insomnia on Health".


Sleep is an important factor in staying healthy.
People have their own little "time clocks", but four hours is just not enough.
It occurs to me that some posters are not afflicted with insomnia, but rather resisting sleep, because they are so involved with certain endeavors they don't want to let go.

I personally need my eight. Without it, everything seems "off". But if I go over that, I wake up "tired", rather than energized. Go figure.



posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 09:20 AM
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reply to post by pause4thought
 


It's also important to know what life circumstances people are under. Some people might be suffering from general anxiety; some might be feeling stressed due to a short term challenge in their life; others might simply have over-active minds that do not wish to "waste time" sleeping. In fact, I have known a few people that say things like "8 hours sleep! Might as well sleep the whole day away!" when you tell them about sleep deprivation.

Those that find they are putting pressure on themselves to fall asleep might be headed down a bad road. If the level of anxiety you feel increases each time you "try" to fall asleep, it may get gradually harder for you to fall asleep each night.

The best advice I can offer for those who are opposed to using medication is to increase the amount of time you exercise. Even with an over-active mind, it is much easier to fall asleep when your body is physically exhausted.

[edit on 17/7/2010 by Dark Ghost]



posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 09:20 AM
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The trying could be the problem, but my temper gets the better of me as ill jump out of bed knowing that theres gonna be no sleep tonight. When youve been laid in bed for 6 hours and dont feel any closer to nodding off it gets frustrating, but once im up again things are ok.

I have tried relaxation techniques, that were shown to me by a doctor and have even tried 'off the shelf' medication and neither worked. I have always avoided prescribed sleep medication, don't really know why but think its because i try to avoid all medication where i can.
My health is pretty good, i rarely drink and if i do its in moderation, so im at a loss. I have thought of it being genetic as my mother and daughter are having the same problems, my mother however seems to stay up for hours then she'll crash for as long as she needs to. My daughter's sleep pattern is pretty much the same as mine, except she isn't adapt to it yet and i watch her struggle with it sometimes.

I really dont put it down to the times we live in, although it is a plausible explanation, i didnt have all these things to keep me awake until later in my teens and my problems were with me long before then.



posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 09:22 AM
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reply to post by Catch_a_Fire
 





I put my problem down to Insomnia because no matter how hard i try to fall asleep, i just can't. It can be frustrating but now i just go to bed when i know i will sleep.


I have insomnia as well - a lifelong thing

it's a different story all together when you want to sleep so badly that getting hit by a truck starts to look like a sleep aid

about gong to bed when you know you will sleep - funny

I have gotten to the point where it doesn't matter what I'm doing - eating, having a conversation... if it seems like I might sleep - I just do

right there - where ever there is at that moment

not always a good thing

I have to say - ATS really is an insomniac's dream



posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 09:23 AM
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And So Is Xbox Live.


[edit on 17-7-2010 by reesie45]



posted on Jul, 17 2010 @ 09:24 AM
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reply to post by Spiramirabilis
 


That's starting to sound a bit like Narcolepsy. I hope you are at least able to control those feelings of "now is a good time to sleep!"


[edit on 17/7/2010 by Dark Ghost]



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