ychology Thesis/Method Statement How important is it for students to get a good night’s sleep? Sleep is the activity that occupies the most of our spare time more than anything. Next to food, water, and shelter, sleep is one of the most important necessities for human survival. Even though humans need sleep to function properly and in the extreme cases live, most people choose to ignore their need for sleep. In an article called Sacrificing Sleep For Study Time Doesn’t Make The Grade, author Michael Breus states students who stay up late studying are more likely to have academic problems the next day. All around the world there are students filled with procrastination. This procrastination has an effect on all of their assignments, and their studying time. Students also have other academic, and other extracurricular activities that take up a lot of their time, so it gets hard finding time to study. Some students will stay up very late for many hours the night before an exam hoping to get an exceptional grade, but sometimes not getting enough sleep can have a bad effect on their grade. Michael Breus wrote this article to address the importance of sleep. Breus talks about the amount of sleep teens consume, and how much sleep is needed every night. Breus also writes about what happens when students don’t get enough sleep. This paper will discuss why sleeping is important, the effects of good & bad sleep, and how much sleep is necessary everyday. No one really knows exactly why we sleep. We spend most of our day sleeping so it must be important right? There are many theories, and hypothesis for why we sleep. Sleep protects, helps us recuperate, helps us restore, and rebuild fading memories and also brings out our creative thinking. Sleep is a very important essential element to every living thing on earth. Sleep helps with longevity, keeps our bodies strong and healthy, improves our memory, and keeps our emotions positive and balanced. Without a good amount of sleep our bodies become weakened, memory gets lost, and it gets difficult to balance emotions. Sleep is an altered state of consciousness wherein the individual is relaxed at rest, and not conscious of the external environment, however the body is still actively functioning. The human body functions on a 24 hours schedule of day, and night through a biological clock called the circadian rhythm. Disruptions to the circadian rhythm can cause problems with the sleep-awake system. As students are up studying late at night their 24-hour schedule is interrupted because they are not getting enough rest, and in the morning they pay for it. Staying up late causes our biological clock to reset. The solution to this problem is not to study less, but to create a schedule that works with your circadian rhythm. As we sleep our brain goes through numerous of stages. The most important stage is the REM stage also known as the paradoxical stage. In this stage the muscles are relaxed but other body systems are still active. Although our brain’s motor cortex is active during REM sleep, your brainstem blocks its messages, leaving muscles relaxed-so relaxed that, except for an occasional finger, toe, or facial twitch, you are essentially paralyzed. (Myers, 2012, p. 74). About an hour after we first sleep we enter REM sleep. The heart rises, breathing becomes rapid and the eyes move around every half-minute or so. Sleep is beneficial in many ways, and can be very bad if you don’t get enough sleep. After sleep deprivation begins to take effect, a person will start to hallucinate, become paranoid and exhibit unusual behavior. Ultimately, it will become impossible for the brain to give directions to the rest of the body without sleep; the brain needs time to rest. In addition, not getting the proper rest could also attribute to future medical issues. When it comes to studying for a test or just preparing for class the next morning the amount of sleep you get that night can be very crucial. Studies prove students who get more sleep at night tend to do better on testing the next morning. When most students are up studying at night they are trying to remember specific things about that subject in a specific order. The students aren’t really learning the material; they are just memorizing what to say. Students that get a good sleep in the night before the test are more focused, and filled with energy; which explains why they perform better the day of the test. Loss of sleep can also cause impaired memory. So even though you are up studying it’s a great possibility that you wont remember much that you studied. Students who sleep less are more likely to gain weight, engage in risky behaviors, and are more likely to feel depressed. All of these effects of bad sleep have a major impact on students, and their schoolwork, but There are also sleep disorders that cause bad sleep. The most common sleeping disorder that many people have is insomnia. When someone has insomnia it means that they have trouble falling or staying asleep. People with insomnia have one or more of these symptoms: difficulty falling asleep, waking up often during the night and having trouble falling back to sleep, waking up too early in the morning and feeling tired when waking up. How much sleep is necessary? How much sleep do we need to get that good grade on a test the next morning? People typically need 8 or 9 hours of sleep every night to help them recuperate. It is also a fact that overall sleep time varies remarkably little as a function of latitude, climate, hours chosen for sleep, and societal patterns. Young adults generally tend to sleep 7 to 8 hours per night despite the greatest variation in all these factors. (Hartmann, 1978, p. 54). However, sometimes the amount of sleep a person needs depends on the individual. Genes also can determine the amount of sleep someone needs. As people get older the amount of sleep that they need decreases. So its safe to say that babies need more sleep than adults. What happens when we don’t meet our sleep needs? By not getting enough sleep we create a sleep debt that we usually have to pay off. Students usually pay off their sleep debt by napping in class or missing school the next morning. If students don’t catch up on their sleep they might experience: poor thinking, difficulty concentrating, stress, and fatigue. Some people even try to pay off their sleep debt on the weekends, but bouncing back from a heavy amount of sleep isn’t that easy. It takes weeks to pay it off. People also go over their limit and tend to oversleep. Oversleeping can be very bad in many ways. Oversleeping can make you lazy, more tired and can even cause diabetes. Overall, students need an average of 7 to 8 hours of sleep if they want to do better in class the following day. In conclusion, Michael Breus’s article Sacrificing Sleep For Study Time Doesn’t Make The Grade teaches how important sleep is. By reading the article you can conclude students that get an adequate amount of sleep can improve their grades, because sleep allows the brain the environment that it needs to promote improved information recall. You can also conclude that students who don’t get an adequate amount of sleep grades drop, and they don’t do as well because their brain is in an environment that doesn’t allow information recall. Not only is sleep just important for students to do well in class, sleep ‘ is important for every living thing on earth. If any human being wants to do well at something they must conceive the energy to do so. Sleep will allow students or any human being to maintain their focus, and energy to achieve that goal.