Author Topic: Sleep  (Read 352 times)

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Offline shnozzola

Sleep
« on: March 10, 2013, 12:45:20 PM »

Read more: http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2013/03/11/130311fa_fact_kolbert#ixzz2N9vwO5fw

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Each of us has an internal clock, or, to use Roenneberg’s term, a “chronotype.” Either we’re inclined to go to bed early and wake up at dawn, in which case we’re “larks,” or we like to stay up late and get up later, which makes us “owls.” (One’s chronotype seems to be largely inherited, although Roenneberg notes, not altogether helpfully, that the “genetics are complex.”) During the week, everyone is expected to get to the office more or less at the same time—let’s say 9 A.M. This suits larks just fine. Owls know they ought to go to bed at a reasonable time, but they can’t—they’re owls. So they end up having to get up one, two, or, in extreme cases, three hours earlier than their internal clock would dictate.

This is what Roenneberg refers to as “social jet lag”—each workday, owls fall asleep in one time zone and, in effect, wake up in another. By the time the week is over, they’re exhausted. They “fly back” to their internal time zone on weekends and sleep in on Saturday and Sunday. Then, on Monday, they start the process all over again.

For larks, the problem is reversed. Social life is arranged so that it’s hard to have one unless you stay out late on Friday and Saturday nights. But, even when larks have partied till 3 A.M., they can’t sleep in the following day—they’re larks. So they stagger through until Monday, when they can finally get some rest.
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Teen-agers are owls, which is why high schools are filled with students who look (and act) like zombies. Roenneberg advocates scheduling high-school classes to begin later in the day, and he cites studies showing that schools that delay the start of first period see performance, motivation, and attendance all increase. (A school district in Minnesota that switched to a later schedule found that the average S.A.T. scores for the top ten per cent of the class rose by more than two hundred points, a result that the head of the College Board called “truly flabbergasting.”)

The author gets wired up for a sleep test, and finds:

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Even when I’d felt that I’d finally conked out, I had kept waking up, for a mind-boggling total of a hundred and forty-one times. Most of these awakenings—a hundred and eleven—were brief, under fifteen seconds. The tables also showed that I’d stopped breathing eight times, which, Palat assured me, was not unusual, and had experienced seventeen “periodic limb movements,” also not uncommon.

I know I post all these New Yorker articles, but I find them interesting, and figure others may also.  The New Yorker does not seem to be in trouble like Time magazine.



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Re: Sleep
« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2013, 01:18:59 PM »
I've always been an owl. Why people get up early in the morning is beyond me. Even before computers, I stayed up late no matter what time I and to get up and go to work.

I can't figure one thing out. I hate going to bed, but then when I'm in bed and have just awoke after a good sleep, I hate getting out of it. Go figure.

I'll check out the article. I have no trouble appreciating the New Yorker

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Offline Bereft_of_Faith

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Re: Sleep
« Reply #2 on: March 11, 2013, 01:25:00 AM »
I can't figure one thing out. I hate going to bed, but then when I'm in bed and have just awoke after a good sleep, I hate getting out of it. Go figure.

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Offline Anfauglir

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Re: Sleep
« Reply #3 on: March 11, 2013, 05:06:57 AM »
Quote from: New Yorker
Teen-agers are owls, which is why high schools are filled with students who look (and act) like zombies. Roenneberg advocates scheduling high-school classes to begin later in the day, and he cites studies showing that schools that delay the start of first period see performance, motivation, and attendance all increase. (A school district in Minnesota that switched to a later schedule found that the average S.A.T. scores for the top ten per cent of the class rose by more than two hundred points, a result that the head of the College Board called “truly flabbergasting.”)

Wow.  I know that when I was at uni I was a serious owl.  Trouble was, I was studying science (with early lectures) rather than arts (which was all later lectures) so I was generaslly still asleep when I was supposed to be in class.

That said, I'm now a definite lark - waking 6:30 ish n(without alarm) and climbing into bed at 22:30.

I remember the author's blurb for Good Omens.....

"Terry Pratchett gets up early in the morning.  Neil Gaiman gets up early in the afternoon.  This book was created in the few hours each day when they were both awake."
Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid.
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