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1. The "natural alarm clock" which enables some people to wake up more or less when they want to is caused by a burst of the stress hormone adrenocorticotropin. Researchers say this reflects an unconscious anticipation of the stress of waking up. (I love/hate this. The only thing worse than waking up before your alarm, is not waking up before your alarm.)
2. Some studies suggest women need up to an hour's extra sleep a night compared to men, and not getting it may be one reason women are much more susceptible to depression than men. (Explains why I get grumpy when I'm trying to sleep and my husband is feeling frisky.)
3. A night on the grog will help you get to sleep but it will be a light slumber and you won't dream much. (A night on the grog?? Great expression. Sounds better than drunk, hammered, plastered, completely pissed out of my mind...you get the idea)
4. In insomnia following bereavement, sleeping pills can disrupt grieving. (Good to know.)
5. Dreams may not serve any purpose at all but be merely a meaningless byproduct of two evolutionary adaptations - sleep and consciousness. (They serve a purpose. That's how I write my books!!)
6. Scientists have not been able to explain a 1998 study showing a bright light shone on the backs of human knees can reset the brain's sleep-wake clock. (Who the hell comes up with these studies? Come here Bob, I want to try something.)
7. One of the best predictors of insomnia later in life is the development of bad habits from having sleep disturbed by young children. (I'll back them up on this one. I haven't slept through the night in seven years.)
8. It's impossible to tell if someone is really awake without close medical supervision. People can take cat naps with their eyes open without even being aware of it. (This is very creepy. I think I may have been doing this yesterday.)
9. A new baby typically results in 400-750 hours lost sleep for parents in the first year. (Ah, that explains the delusions.)
10. Certain types of eye movements during REM sleep correspond to specific movements in dreams, suggesting at least part of the dreaming process is analagous to watching a film. (A pretty X rated film in my case. I love my heroes...and my husband of course.)
11. Seventeen hours of sustained wakefulness leads to a decrease in performance equivalent to a blood alcohol-level of 0.05%. (I'd rather drink than stay awake.)
12. Diaries from the pre-electric-light-globe Victorian era show adults slept nine to 10 hours a night with periods of rest changing with the seasons in line with sunrise and sunsets. (Smart people. I think we should revert to this practice.)
And last but not least....
13. Experts say one of the most alluring sleep distractions is the 24-hour accessibility of the internet. (We don't need experts. I could have told you that!!)
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