curlicuecal:

curlicuecal:

on the topic of our societal disinterest in sleep quality and stress as health factors:

did you know the world health organization has declared shift work a carcinogen?

sleep stuff

I had to leave the talk early, but it was rly dang cool, so here’s some more information:

As we know, sleep is strongly based on circadian rhythms (genetic/physiological responses to light/dark cycles.) *But* sleep patterns have to be trained (via regular sleep, activity, and light patterns).

They also vary among people— in particular people of European descent tend to have longer cycles and people of African descent tend to have shorter cycles, probably due to differences in light patterns at those latitudes. This has actually been linked to increased sleep delay (which we’ll talk about in a minute) and resulting negative health consequences/ increased depression in African Americans.

Ok, sleep delay:

Loosely, exposure to sunlight (and blue light, like from electronic screens) suppresses melatonin production during the day. After the sun goes down, melatonin spikes, causing drowsiness.

But.

People with certain genetics, people with Seasonal Affective Disorder, etc, often experience “sleep delay” where their melatonin levels spike later and not as much. (Basically, they genetically respond to light differently). This leads to later bedtimes, lower quality sleep, and greater incidence of insomnia.

Another thing that can contribute to this is environment, for example not enough sunlight during the day, which leads to less suppression of melatonin during the day and later and lower spiking at night. (Basically imagine you move the line in the left sunlight part of the graph up and look how the height and starting point of the night time peak would change).

Why do we care?

Well, sleep delay is correlated with depression, mood regulation disorders, central body weight gain (the kind that correlates with heart problems), increased cancer, and decreased lifespan.

So. That’s a thing.

Also, “night owls” (people that don’t feel sleepy in the evening) are 3 times less likely to experience remission of depression.

(Frankly, I feel personally attacked by this talk.)

A few other unrelated notes:

ADHD is often correlated with lower quality sleep, both because of sleep delay and because of trouble with sleep maintenance (you are more likely to wake up at night.). Ditto caffeine and stimulants— they don’t necessarily interfere with you *falling* asleep, but they decrease sleep quality by interfering with sleep maintenance. ADHD symptoms are also *worsened* by low quality sleep, so that’s a fun cycle.

Adults, and/or people who have spent years on shortened sleep schedules often have problems with “early morning arousal” (not the fun kind) where sleep is terminated early. So for example “no matter when I go to sleep, I only sleep for 4 hours.” This is also a problem with sleep maintenance, and apparently can sometimes be retrained with cognitive behavioral therapy, although don’t ask me how.

But, happy thought: a lot of this stuff CAN actually be addressed, with some effort, and assuming your society values sleep enough to not lock you in a job where you can’t get off of a life-shortening irregular sleep schedule.

starsinursa:

me, as a kid: i can’t wait til i’m an adult so i can stay up late EVERY NIGHT

me, as an adult, crawling into bed at 6:30 pm: oh thank god

paddysnuffles:

curlicuecal:

mikkeneko:

atern:

I honestly believe the whole “adults require less sleep” thing is honest to god probably a myth created by capitalism

It is.

i honestly believe that sleep deprivation is the biggest ignored/neglected root cause of health dangers that prematurely kill adults

ask me sometime about the role of sleep in the leptin ghrelin cycle and how its interruption destabilizes weight homeostasis

or about the new research showing that heart disease is not caused by fat, like we thought for years, but by inflammation in the circulatory system whose root cause is unknown but one of the prime suspects is, you guessed it, sleep deprivation

but nobody wants to hear that lack of sleep is killing people. employers don’t want to hear it. and god knows that having sold their waking hours to capitalism to survive workers don’t want to lose the only time they have left to them to live their lives, mostly stolen from sleep

i mean even i don’t want to do anything about it and i love  sleep, i just love overwatch more

this this this this this

our society places almost zero value on sleep

on enough sleep

on uninterrupted sleep

on regular, predictable, cycling sleep

all the evidence we have suggests sleep is really, really, really important to the processes of the human body, including both mental and physical health, and yet when was the last time you heard somebody suggest that people had a *right* to sufficient, regular sleep?

Reminder that 

– Humans are not meant to sleep for extended periods of uninterrupted sleep. 

By this I don’t mean “humans shouldn’t have 8+ hours of sleep a night”; I mean that we are supposed to sleep for four to five hours (ish), then get up and do something relaxing like reading for a half hour to an hour, then get another bout of four to five hours. This is what our bodies were designed for. 

Sleeping the whole night through was a fad started with the advent of the lightbulb. Sleeping the whole night through is so recent (and artificial) that First Sleep and Second Sleep are mentioned in Dickens’ novels.

– Lack of sleep for even a single night severely compromises your immune system.

If you’re planning on getting little sleep or pulling an all-nighter, make sure to eat lots of fruit and veggies/take vitamins that day. Or even better, get yourself some bee propolis. It’s a natural remedy used for thousands of years in Latin America and is insanely good for boosting up compromised immune systems (if you get the drop kind, put 3 to 4 drops in a spoonful of honey and mix well with a 2nd spoon to mask the strong taste). It has no side effects and is all but impossible to overdose on.

– According to several government bodies around the world, chronic lack of sleep is literally tied for 1st place as the worst kind of torture (the other is solitary isolation)

– Expecting a teen to get up for 8:30 classes is the equivalent of expecting an adult to be at work at 4 am.

After babies, teens are the age group that needs the most amount of sleep. Puberty is exhausting, and the body needs time to recharge. Ideally, a teen should be getting between 10 to 12 hours of sleep at the bare minimum. Most teens are lucky if they manage to get 8. And that’s a gigantic problem; not only does lack of sleep affect mood (which is extra significant when your hormones are already riding a rollercoaster to begin with), but also has massive effects on growth, which is kinda what the whole puberty thing is supposed to be about.

– According to research “starting work before 10 a.m. is tantamount to torture and is making staff sick and stressed”

– Humans were not designed to have the same sleep cycle across the species. Much the opposite in fact.

Night owls and morning people are an actual thing. Because we’re pack creatures, Nature came up with a clever way for our ancestors to always have someone on the lookout for predators and threats: make people naturally alert at varying times so that there’s always someone alert to keep watch. 

Forcing night owls to follow morning people’s sleep cycle means night owls live with what researchers have referred to as “permanent jetlag”.

90sgrl:

okay but waking up in the middle of the night to soft rain and knowing you’ve still got hours to sleep, when you’re toasty warm and comfortable & sleep has made you forget all your worries and responsibilities and u go back to sleep feeling as content as ever

paddysnuffles:

curlicuecal:

mikkeneko:

atern:

I honestly believe the whole “adults require less sleep” thing is honest to god probably a myth created by capitalism

It is.

i honestly believe that sleep deprivation is the biggest ignored/neglected root cause of health dangers that prematurely kill adults

ask me sometime about the role of sleep in the leptin ghrelin cycle and how its interruption destabilizes weight homeostasis

or about the new research showing that heart disease is not caused by fat, like we thought for years, but by inflammation in the circulatory system whose root cause is unknown but one of the prime suspects is, you guessed it, sleep deprivation

but nobody wants to hear that lack of sleep is killing people. employers don’t want to hear it. and god knows that having sold their waking hours to capitalism to survive workers don’t want to lose the only time they have left to them to live their lives, mostly stolen from sleep

i mean even i don’t want to do anything about it and i love  sleep, i just love overwatch more

this this this this this

our society places almost zero value on sleep

on enough sleep

on uninterrupted sleep

on regular, predictable, cycling sleep

all the evidence we have suggests sleep is really, really, really important to the processes of the human body, including both mental and physical health, and yet when was the last time you heard somebody suggest that people had a *right* to sufficient, regular sleep?

Reminder that 

– Humans are not meant to sleep for extended periods of uninterrupted sleep. 

By this I don’t mean “humans shouldn’t have 8+ hours of sleep a night”; I mean that we are supposed to sleep for four to five hours (ish), then get up and do something relaxing like reading for a half hour to an hour, then get another bout of four to five hours. This is what our bodies were designed for. 

Sleeping the whole night through was a fad started with the advent of the lightbulb. Sleeping the whole night through is so recent (and artificial) that First Sleep and Second Sleep are mentioned in Dickens’ novels.

– Lack of sleep for even a single night severely compromises your immune system.

If you’re planning on getting little sleep or pulling an all-nighter, make sure to eat lots of fruit and veggies/take vitamins that day. Or even better, get yourself some bee propolis. It’s a natural remedy used for thousands of years in Latin America and is insanely good for boosting up compromised immune systems (if you get the drop kind, put 3 to 4 drops in a spoonful of honey and mix well with a 2nd spoon to mask the strong taste). It has no side effects and is all but impossible to overdose on.

– According to several government bodies around the world, chronic lack of sleep is literally tied for 1st place as the worst kind of torture (the other is solitary isolation)

– Expecting a teen to get up for 8:30 classes is the equivalent of expecting an adult to be at work at 4 am.

After babies, teens are the age group that needs the most amount of sleep. Puberty is exhausting, and the body needs time to recharge. Ideally, a teen should be getting between 10 to 12 hours of sleep at the bare minimum. Most teens are lucky if they manage to get 8. And that’s a gigantic problem; not only does lack of sleep affect mood (which is extra significant when your hormones are already riding a rollercoaster to begin with), but also has massive effects on growth, which is kinda what the whole puberty thing is supposed to be about.

– According to research “starting work before 10 a.m. is tantamount to torture and is making staff sick and stressed”

– Humans were not designed to have the same sleep cycle across the species. Much the opposite in fact.

Night owls and morning people are an actual thing. Because we’re pack creatures, Nature came up with a clever way for our ancestors to always have someone on the lookout for predators and threats: make people naturally alert at varying times so that there’s always someone alert to keep watch. 

Forcing night owls to follow morning people’s sleep cycle means night owls live with what researchers have referred to as “permanent jetlag”.