Why You Need Sleep

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Why You Need Sleep

a baby happily stretches while laying in a bed

a baby happily stretches while laying in a bed

a baby happily stretches while laying in a bed

a baby happily stretches while laying in a bed

Adela Storey, Staff Writer

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Sleep is something neglected by many people, especially high school students. Whether school work or technology is the reason for staying up late, it can have negative effects on top of feeling tired. Most people have heard the idea that adults should sleep 7-9 hours a night, teenagers require 8-10, and small children function best at 11-14 hours, and this is true. However, it is also true that many people do not even reach the minimum requirement for a good night’s sleep. Does the amount of sleep you get truly matter to your health? The answer is yes. Without sleep, the body is definitely negatively affected, both mentally and physically.

During a night of sleep, the brain is able to process and store information from the day into memories. This process of moving this information to long term memory is called  “consolidation” and it is regarded as one of the vital roles during sleep. Once information is stored into long term thought, it is easier to recall during “memory” tasks. During the time of consolidation, the information stored aids in improving “language, social, and motor skills”  which are truly vital to human function. Without a certain amount of sleep (8 hours on average) consolidation is not able to finish effectively and language, social, and motor skills along with memory can be affected.

Lack of sleep decreases function of the immune system, leading to the body not being able to fight off illness as well. Along with the higher chance of getting sick, Healthline.com states that your skin can get “fine lines, wrinkles, and uneven skin color” which can leave you dissatisfied with the way you look.

More seriously, less sleep than needed can lead to developing coronary heart disease, and chances of having a stroke are greatly increased. Diabetes can also develop from getting less than 5 hours of sleep, or none at all. Without the required hours of rest, insulin decreases and sugar levels rise.

Sleep is very important, and it is vital to get around 7 hours a night to gain full mental and physical function. Get some rest; there is always the next day to check your phone.