This topic is to allow forumers to log their sleep over time and share information that may lead to better sleep.
General causes of poor or inadequate sleep, such as work, school, loud and noisy neighbors or family members, circadian rhythms, caffeine intake, and panic and emotional distress may be discussed here. However, this topic is not for acute personal distress in general - for that, please use Prayer Requests (for prayer support), How Shall We Then Live? (for biblical advice), and/or Pain Is_______ if you just wish to talk about the distresses of our fallen existence.
Please do not judge people for not getting enough sleep. Our society seems to believe that sleep is optional and runs off the caffeine industry, and fighting the social forces enough to get shut-eye can be a daunting task. This topic is to inspire self-awareness, encouragement, and group problem-solving, perhaps with a taste of humor, not a judgmental pillow fight.
- Adult parents need 7 hours of sleep per night, teenagers need 9 hours, and children need 10-14 hours of sleep per night depending on your age. For children, your parents know about your sleep requirements better than I do, so when your parents tell you it's time for bed, it's time for bed.
- Teenagers have a natural tendency toward being night owls and sleeping in that is supposed to reset around college age.
- 87% of teenagers are sleep-deprived.
- Sleeping increases your mental performance. When you sleep, your brain cleans itself by draining old brain fluid down your spinal cord and replacing it with new brain fluid. It also serves as your brain's "save" function by writing new information that you've acquired into long-term memory. Caffeine does not do either of these things.
- Eating before bedtime is a bad idea, because eating increases your metabolism as your body needs to digest your food, which can lead to tossing and turning in bed. It's actually better, I have discovered, to go for a walk or engage in mild exercise after eating instead of sleeping.
- Most people have something called a circadian rhythm that is supposed to make it so you sleep at night instead of during the day. Many night shift workers struggle with sleeping during the day as a result, and have to get special curtains to block out the light of day to allow them to sleep during said day.
- A full sleep cycle takes an hour and 30 minutes. Since it takes about 15 minutes to fall asleep, a length of an hour and 45 minutes is recommended for a nap, or 3 hours 15 minutes, etc. Waking in the middle of REM sleep is uncomfortable and can make you feel worse than when you fell asleep. If you don't have time for a full cycle, waking up after 30 minutes will stop you from entering REM altogether and thus giving you a better result than interrupting REM in the middle.
- Finally, most people have their creativity shut off sometime around 2 AM at night. I felt this very intensely when I was in high school, but then it seemed to mysteriously vanish in college...along with my sanity. But this should be kept in mind for artists with tight deadlines.
Why this topic exists
In the middle of my senior year of high school, I made a very interesting discovery: if I took a nap as soon as I came home from school and then proceeded to stay awake late finishing my homework afterward, my homework productivity and accuracy increased by 500%. This discovery eventually led me to understand my recurring insomnia and boredom as a child staring up at the ceiling in darkness. My body has the most energy and the most mental performance at about 10 PM each day, bar nothing. At that hour of the night, I want to be working.
In college, I made the other discovery that my body doesn't have a circadian rhythm and can sleep literally whenever I feel tired enough to do so. I spent two days where I stayed up all night and slept all day with no real noticeable ill effect. The problem with that is, most stores and businesses aren't open at night, so it pays to actually sleep at night instead of the day. Yes, that was the only thing that ended that.
As a result of both of these discoveries, I became a chronic night owl, perpetually living in chronological revolt on the borders of date lines. I changed my schedule instead of myself. But most people, due to circadian rhythms and daytime obligations, cannot get away with this. They can't play like Miss_S and just sleep in until noon, or just take an afternoon nap, etc.
My lifestyle choice led to me eventually checking yonder forum late at night and sometimes even playing the Aetherlight that late, and so I noticed that forum activity would usually drop off and stop at about 10 PM. I attributed this to wise parents putting their children to bed.
But recently I've noticed forumers staying up much later, and conversations on the Unnameable Website of Doom run really late at night. I actually ended up staying up with a couple of forumers until 5 AM their time. I'm not judging them for this, as it is nice to have a friend with you for emotional support when you're trying to do something if you're more of the extravert persuasion. However, these incidents, as well as some other comments on the forums and elsewhere, left me to be concerned that people weren't getting enough sleep.
Because of my unusual situation, I will be considering each "night" to begin at 10 PM and cycle through the 24 hours back to 10 PM. So 10 PM 6/2/2022 - 10 PM 6/3/2022 would be one "night" - any sleep during that time would be on the 6/2/2022 - 6/3/2022 night as a block. Whereas a normal human would just consider the night of 6/2/2022 - 6/3/2022 to be the actual night, which would be from 9PM to 6 AM.
And with that, I will start us off with our first entry for the log, which is the suggested format:
Night 1: 6/2/2022 - 6/3/2022: 1 AM - 5:30 AM: 4 hours; 1:30 PM - 6:30 PM: 5 hours --> 9 hours
If you don't want to discuss so much information,
Night 1: 9 hours
would be sufficient.
There is no obligation to use this topic, and anyone trying to coerce information about sleep that people do not wish to share will be fined 200 cogs.