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The Negative Causes Of Sleep Deprivation

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It isn’t a mystery that college students don’t get the quality sleep after spending hours during the night socializing and drinking. Very few feel refreshed in the morning causing them to be dysfunctional and reducing overall well being. The multitude of sleep problems like insomnia, early awakenings, and difficulties falling asleep are clear signs of suboptimal sleep. To fix the problem, we need to examine the causes, so we are better equipped to prevent the negative outcomes associated with sleep deprivation and sleep quality. Sleep is a unifying behavior between all complex life forms, yet it is not simple. It is a behavior which takes over one third of our lives. It is practiced by all animals, including mammals, insects, reptiles, fish, and amphibians. In fact, as Martin concluded, dolphins and other aquatic mammals, for example, are able to sleep with one half of their brain at a time in order to swim to the surface for air. This is known as unihemispheric sleep, and it is also practiced by birds to keep an eye for predators (Martin 469-470). To summarize Epstein, sleep is divided into two phases called REM (rapid eye movement) and non-REM sleep. Non-REM is divided into three stages. During stage one, which lasts about five minutes, the brain produces theta waves to prepare the body for sleep; these waves are also prominent during daydreaming. Stage two is a deeper level of sleep typically lasting twenty-five or thirty minutes. This is the stage when sleep spindles
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