BY LAUREN MILLER
Every evening as the sky falls dark, most Americans happily climb into bed and doze off to sleep. For thousands of college students, however, sleep will not come at all. Many college students have fallen into the dangerous habit of working through the night, studying and completing homework assignments. Students push through exhaustion with the best of intentions, most believing they are doing what they must to succeed in school, when really they may be causing irreparable damage to their bodies and posing serious threats to their safety. Sleep deprivation in college students is one of the most common causes of slipped grade point average, depression, and illness.
“I see college students every day that have only slept a quarter of the amount they need to function. I usually see them most during midterms or finals at school. They’re immune systems are compromised so they are fighting illness ranging from a simple cough, to the flu. It’s not uncommon for students suffering from lack of sleep to suffer from depression.”, said Nurse Marilyn Wish. Students suffering from lack of sleep are twice as likely to be in a car crash, and are more at risk of physical injury or being attacked due to lack of focus on their surroundings. With final exams looming, there are several points to keep in mind that will ensure better sleep, a healthier body, and more safety. Following these simple steps can ensure a quality eight hours of sleep per night.
- Put away books and homework assignments 30 minutes prior to going to sleep. This will help to relax your mind, making it easier to fall asleep.
- Don’t study or do computer work in bed. This triggers your mind to think that your bedroom is a work space, not a place for rest.
- Turn off all electronic devices including your TV, phones, and tablets one hour prior to bed time.
Taking care of yourself as a college student is the most important lesson to be learned. Ensuring you are getting enough sleep is the best way to ensure your success in school and life.