Pshchological Issue of Sleep Essay

Submitted By TawsifIslam1
Words: 718
Pages: 3

John Abbott College
Intro To Psychology

Tawsif Islam
The Importance of Sleep, And The Issue of Sleeping Disorders

Due Date: May 7, 2013

Sleep. We need it, and we crave it. Some of us need more sleep than others. For example, one person could go to sleep at 12 at night and wake up at 6 in the morning, and easily go on with their daily routine. On the other hand, one person could fall asleep at 10 and still have trouble getting up at 7 the next morning. I unfortunately, am the latter of the two. I definitely enjoy my beauty rest. I mean, I need a lot of it, and I enjoy the hell out of it. It’s great! Anyways it begs the question, what is sleep? Why do we need it, and what does it provide us with? On average, a person spends about a third of their entire life sleeping (Kunz and Herman, 2000, Webb, 1994). A dictionary defines sleep as “a natural periodic state of rest for the mind and body, in which the eyes usually close and consciousness is completely or partially lost, so that there is a decrease in bodily movement and responsiveness to external stimuli. During sleep the brain in humans and other mammals undergoes a characteristic cycle of brain-wave activity that includes intervals of dreaming.” We’re all aware of what dreams are, I’m sure. It’s that vision that you have in your mind when you’re in a deep sleep that is sometimes good, and sometimes bad. However, we don’t always have dreams when we sleep. So the question is, when do we have dreams? What’s the process starting from sleeping, to dreaming? What happens when we sleep? The dictionary definition speaks of a “cycle of brain-wave activity.” Brain-waves? What are those? How are we supposed to know that there are waves that come from our brain while we sleep? Well obviously, it’s not ourselves that find out what our brain activity is like, but rather there are scientists who spend their time researching and gathering information on the human brain while we sleep, to better understand what happens in this separate state of consciousness. There are two different types of sleep; the first being NREM sleep, and the second being REM sleep. NREM is an acronym that stands for “Non Rapid Eye Movement” and REM is “Rapid Eye Movement.” NREM sleep is often referred to as “quiet sleep” because during the stages of NREM sleep, the heart slows down, breathing becomes fainter, the body has little to no movement, and your blood pressure and brain activity gradually decrease. However, NREM sleep is not the sleep that you usually get or need. You can still be easily woken up while under NREM sleep because you’re not yet unconscious. You’re still able to react to things