Sleeping Disorders: The Importance Of Sleep

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Bluntly said, sleep is vital. It allows our body to create a regular circadian rhythm: a 24-hour internal mechanism that controls our sleep and wake cycle, as well as, our eating and drinking, body temperature, and other biological mechanisms. With a proper circadian rhythm, the brain is able to reconstruct an individual’s daily memories and tie together the numerous things he or she has learned throughout the day (Lange, Dimitrov, & Born, 2010). Sleeping enough hours also leads to a stronger immune system, sharpens our attention, increases our creativity, and lowers our stress and depression levels. Yet, the importance of sleep is often understated and ignored as numerous students, especially college students, sacrifice their sleeping hours. …show more content…
study (2001) found that individuals whose sleep was cut short, specifically because of snoring, also performed worse scholastically and had more misconduct problems. In some instances, it even caused the individual to share similar characteristics with students who have Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder. Gozal et al. (2001) found that these students, regardless of their background, had the lowest GPAs and class rankings, especially during their last academic quarter. Sleeping problems cause slower brain growth during critical periods of brain development affecting the individual’s intellectual and cognitive abilities. Because brain development during sensitive periods is long lasting, it can cause the brain to adapt to the negative effects produced by the sleeping disorder. For example, even if the individual stops snoring they are still at risk of achieving lower grades since their brain is less flexible and has a harder time adapting their current sleeping patterns (Gozal et al., 2001). Therefore, high school students who do not sleep enough hours or develop a sleeping problem have a harder time performing to their full potential as they have a difficult time concentrating in class and analyzing the …show more content…
Additionally, the less sleep a student gets at night, the lower their leptin and ghrelin levels are (Knutson et al., 2016). Ghrelin tells the brain when we are hungry, while leptin is an important hormone that regulates how much we eat and signals the brain when we are full. A decrease in both chemicals can cause the individual to become overweight as it is harder for the brain to detect when the individual is full, as well as, harder for the stomach to fully digest larger amounts of food intake than the usual. Unfortunately, as the body takes in more glucose, the individual increases their risk of developing Type Two diabetes. A study at Northwestern Medicine found that people who go to bed after 3:45 a.m. consume 248 more calories than usual (Paul, 2011). Even though the student is gaining more calories, their protein and nutrient intake is decreasing as they are most likely consuming fast-food products. Instead of having three meals a day, students who go to bed later are more likely to have four meals and snacks (Paul, 2011). Eating is more highly correlated with a decrease in self-esteem causing them to lose motivation to excel in school as they are more likely to have a pessimistic view of themselves. A study by Wiggins, Schatz, and West (1994) found that students who are depressed or have low-self esteem are likely to do

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