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is it a bad idea for one to be sleep deprived in their late-teens and early-twenties?

I am a 19 year old college student who recently got out of school for summer break. I have been going to bed around 4 every day since August. I was wondering if it is a serious problem for a person my age to stay up so late continuously. If it is, is there anyway for me to reverse this habit?

Topics: issues sleep
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  • May 16 2013: you guys made a lot of sense, i really need to get some sleep. thank you all for expressing your viewpoints on the subject.
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    May 16 2013: 4AM or PM? What time do you rise and shine? Sleep deprivation is one of the most efficient tortures known. Even the most resolute can be "persuaded" by a pattern of permitted sleep for a brief period followed by a raucous awakening. Sleep/Waken, sleep/waken, sleep/waken. It does not take long to get the desired response in exchange for being allowed to sleep. Sleep deprivation is always a bad idea for the one being deprived.
  • May 15 2013: Yes.

    Perhaps some questions answered here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sleep

    Specifically about teenage sleep deprivation: http://www.apa.org/monitor/oct01/sleepteen.aspx
  • May 15 2013: Yes.
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    May 15 2013: Kera, have a look at something called Polyphasic sleeping. It is a sleeping pattern which involves short naps throughout the day and in some cases only 2 and a half hours a day of sleep. There have been some studies on this and from a health perspective, there would obviously be some concerns about the quality and depth of sleep, known as REM sleep (rapid eye movement) but the studies showed that your body can adapt to the situation and to short naps spread out through the day. Because the speed at which your body will go into the REM sleep (deep sleep) will be a lot quicker once you adapt to the napping than an individual who sleeps for maybe 8-9 hours a night, where it may take their body's up to 90 minutes to enter this stage. Hope this helps.