Busting Sleep Myths – 3 Things You Would Be Surprised To Know Are Not True About Sleep
Adequate sleep is one of the most overlooked health tips. As lives get busier, sleep inevitably gets pushed to the back burner. A lot of us think we can beat sleep deprivation and just carry on, but the truth is, there are facts about sleep that cannot be ignored. Here are some sleep myths to examine:
1. When you yawn, that means you need sleep
Yawning has traditionally been thought of a sign that we need to head to bed. But scientifically speaking, yawning is still a mystery. Some studies have shown that yawning seems to cool the brain down. This in turn could perk us up when we are distracted or bored. As to why yawning seems to be contagious, that could be because biologically, yawning helps us to coordinate our activity with our community. At least that is the working theory.
2. Some people are immune to the effects of caffeine.
We all have those friends who brag about being immune to the effects of caffeine. However, whether or not a person seems to be able to fall asleep after drinking caffeine, it is still a stimulant and affects everyone negatively. EEGs have shown that caffeine causes an across the board increase in brain activity that is enough to disrupt sleep. If your friends brag that caffeine doesn’t affect them, it’s quite likely they are simply so sleep deprived that they fall asleep despite the caffeine. If they went without caffeine, it’s quite likely their body would rest even better.
3. Get 7-8 straight hours of sleep every night
Many of us have this idea stuck in our head that once we go to bed, the healthiest thing to do is the sleep in one long stretch. But recently this idea has been challenged by researchers and backed up by historians who have found evidence that humans through the ages have slept in two separate chunks of sleep each night. This appears to be overall the natural pattern for human sleep. There are references to “first sleep” and “second sleep” throughout medieval literature. In 1990, a study placed volunteers in an environment devoid of artificial lighting and stimulants. The study found that participants fell naturally into two distinct chunks of sleep phases.