Sleeping is a time where a person can get their time of relaxing and repairing both mind and body. It is related to having a healthy, steady life. The quality, duration, and regularity of sleep determines whether a person has healthy or poor sleeping habits. Poor sleeping habits have many causes and consequences that affect the person. On average a person needs to sleep eight to ten hours a day. Most people with bad sleeping habits suffer from sleep deprivation, which is a dangerous sleeping habit. This means that people sleep for an insufficient amount of time, which later affects them negatively. This paper aims to explain the causes, effects, and previous solutions of sleep deprivation, a poor sleeping habit. (Chaput & Dutil, 2016)
Chittora et al. (2015) stated that one of the most common reasons behind having poor sleeping habits is modern day technology. Mobile phones, laptops, and video games have a huge negative effect on sleeping. Due to the over stimulation and the extreme light exposure a person is drawn away from sleeping. People tend to spend hours almost doing nothing on their phones and lose track of time. Others might put on a movie to fall asleep to, only to find their selves watching even more movies. People do not feel the impact until they wake up, however they find their selves repeating the cycle daily. Being deprived of sleep after ‘gaming’ online all night is a common phenomenon amongst human beings. This usually happened due to the melatonin, hormone responsible for sleep, is restrained by the blue light omitted from screens.
Another cause behind having poor sleeping habits are the excessive demands that exist in a person’s work-life. This can happen in two ways where a student can be sleep deprived due to homework, quizzes, or even projects. When a student has too much homework to do, he/she tends to stay up all night to finish the assignment due to avoid getting bad grades. The student makes a tradeoff and sacrifices sleep to do a homework, study for a quiz that was given on short-notice, or work on a difficult project. On the other hand, work obligations can also be a cause behind sleep deprivation where a person might stay all nigh working. In both cases the work-life is prioritized, causing the person to suffer the consequences of not sleeping well. (Chittora et al. 2015)
According to Chaput & Dutil, (2016), there is a fact that every problem has its causes and effects. The effects of poor sleeping habits, or sleep deprivation, can be categorized into many groups such as physical, psychological, or physiological. The first effect is a psychical effect which is gaining weight. This happens because it’s been proven that lack of sleep causes people to be hungrier, which happens due to two changes in hormones. Fist, sleep deprivation causes an increase in levels of ghrelin which is the hormone responsible for hunger. Secondly, the hormone that causes a person to feel full, leptin, decreases due to lack of sleep. Adding these two factors together, people tend to eat more and gain weight. Hence, this may eventually result in obesity.
The second consequence of having poor sleeping habits is forgetfulness and distraction. When a person is sleep deprived he/she suffer from the frequent forgetfulness. This happens where memory formation is affected negatively, hence there is a struggle to recall any information or facts. The brain needs to sleep so that it can easily remember or recall information. This is also affected by a person’s easiness to become distracted due to sleep deprivation. Lack of sleep decreases the ability to focus, so it leads to getting distracted. Forgetting things may be linked to distraction where a person might forget due to the distraction that has occurred. These may harm a student in an exam where the information studied may be lost. Another issue is people getting distracted while driving, which is very dangerous. (Chittora et al. 2015)
Like all problems there are solutions being thought of and executed to enhance people’s sleeping behavior and decrease the negative effects that come along side with it. One of these solutions is sleep interventions, where people are introduced to sleep protocols that help them organize their sleeping habits. Of course, technology and other sources of distraction are removed to help people stay on track. However, this solution is not successful as many people still have poor sleeping habits. This is because, first people do not necessarily turn to this solution to stop sleep deprivation. Secondly, a lot of people are not aware that poor sleeping habits is a problem at all. Hence, these people do not seek finding a solution as they do not see the problem. (Weinberg, Noble, & Hammond, 2015)
In my opinion, to address a problem there has to be awareness first. The answer doesn’t have to be complicated like forming interventions or therapy centers. Raising awareness alongside with the reasons behind sleep deprivation and how to improve it may be enough. People should be enlightened with the many reasons behind this problem, so they can relate or even know the reason behind their sleeping behavior. Then, more than one solution may be suggested with every cause so that people can try them out. An important thing that needs to be delivered to people is the effects that come from sleep deprivation, as this is the most convincing way to get people to improve their habits.
To conclude, sleeping is a vital component of a healthy development and it is necessary for both physical and mental health. People with good sleeping behavior have both positive and healthy vibes in their lives and avoid many negative issues. However, sleep deprivation where people sleep less than is required leads to harmful effects that people sometimes do not notice. Technology is a very tempting distraction and is one of the most common causes behind sleep deprivation. On the other hand, work pressures whether it is school or job requirements may keep a person up all night to finish them. Poor sleeping habits is not recognized as an issue amongst many people and that what causes the solutions to fail at being effective. Raising awareness may be a good solution as it could help more people understand the importance of sleep, helping them to change their habits.