Do you sleep like a baby (or like some parents would hope their little ones would sleep!), or do you wind up counting sheep?
This nightly nourishment supports good physical and mental health. It also impacts our capacity to learn, as molecular biologist John Medina wrote in his book, Brain Rules: 12 Principles for Surviving and Thriving at Work, Home and School. In considering the connections between sleep and a person’s capacity to learn, Medina noted studies that “… showed that when sleep was restricted to six hours or less per night for just five nights, cognitive performance matched that of a person suffering from 48 hours of continual sleep deprivation.”
We’re all different
… which Medina also acknowledged. He noted that some people can’t manage with less than six or seven hours’ sleep, while others, known as healthy insomniacs, thrive on four or five hours a night. He cautioned that, when you don’t get whatever quota your body needs, “… bad things really do happen to your brain” . Oh, and it also takes a toll on the rest of your body – but you already know that.
Is this an issue for many people? You bet it is. According to the World Sleep Association of Sleep Medicine, sleep problems impact up to 45 percent of the world’s population.
With next Saturday marking the start of December, many of us will find our schedules filling up even more than usual. That can make it even more important than usual to get a good night’s sleep. That leads to the focus of my latest Weekend Poll:
Do you make sleep a priority…
… or are you burning the candle at both ends?
Please take a couple of minutes to complete the poll below, and I’ll publish results during the week.