Saturday Night Trivia: Sleep Edition

In a recent post by the National Sleep Foundation, five trivial, yet interesting facts about sleeping habits in humans and other organisms were published. Study hard, because they might appear on Final Jeopardy someday…

  • If it takes you less than five minutes to fall asleep at night, you’re sleep-deprived. The ideal is 10 to 15 minutes, which means you’re tired enough to sleep deeply, but not so exhausted you feel sleepy during the day; This is an objective measure of sleepiness and a preliminary test for sleep apnea or insomnia in which the individual takes less than 5 min or greater than 30 min, respectively, to fall asleep under “normal” circumstances.
  • A new baby typically results in 400-750 hours of lost sleep for parents in the first year; this is ironic considering that babies sleep an average of 16 HOURS a day.
  • Elephants sleep standing up during non-REM sleep, but lie down for REM sleep; I suppose this disparity arises from REM-induced muscle atonia, which everyone should know from a previous blog entry (hint hint; read my blog…).  

  • After five nights of partial sleep deprivation, three drinks will have the same effect on your body as six would when you’ve slept enough; Alcohol = Hypnotic + Sleep Deprivation = Hypnotic ==RED ALERT (a modification of Dr. William C. Dement’s infamous quote, “Drowsiness is red alert.”
  • Humans sleep on average of about three hours less than other primates such as chimps, rhesus monkeys, squirrel monkeys and baboons, all of which sleep for 10 hours; Got electricity?.
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