A recent study undertaken by the Sleep Health Foundation, found that close to 40% Australians were sleep deprived in some way. Another report suggests that this deprivation can dissemble cognitive function, making people act uncharacteristically.
Studies have constantly highlighted the importance of sleep for normal human function. 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep plus 10-15 minutes extra to fall asleep is considered desirable for the body or this could lead to atypical situation and in some cases be even fatal.
Sleep unit manager at the Wesley Hospital’s Sleep Disorders Centre, Phil Teuwen, said a lack of sleep made it difficult for brain cells to communicate effectively. “Sleep deprivation impairs the brain and affects your reaction time, cognition, and memory function. All those things can deteriorate if you have poor quality sleep. We know that after a night shift, when you’re driving home, your impairment is equal to, or greater than, someone who has a .05 blood [alcohol] level,” he said.
There have been efforts in corporate houses around the world to accommodate the need for their worker’s sleep needs and the 15 minutes power naps that is known to revive senses with designated nap nooks. This is known to make workforce more productive and efficient prove studies.
“You can live longer without food than you can without sleep. Anyone that has tried to break the record of staying awake the longest has experienced hallucinations as cognitive decline is inescapable,” said Teuwen.