Science & Space

What Would Happen If You Stopped Sleeping?

What Would Happen If You Stopped Sleeping?

I bet we all feel like we could become more productive.

Whether it’s taking up a new hobby, or just getting more work done, we all wish we had the time to do it… But what if we did? What if we just stopped sleeping. Well, it does make sense to cut out such an activity since the average person spends about 25 years of their life sleeping. This all sounds good, but how long could you keep this up? A day? A month?

Scientists think sleep is important for two main reasons: It helps us repair and restore our organ systems including our muscles, immune systems, and various other hormones, and it plays a crucial role in memory, helping us retain what we learned at work or school for later use. So maybe cutting sleep out isn’t the best idea! The average person could only keep it up for a few days at most. After day 1, you wouldn’t actually feel that bad (for now). A certain part of the brain will be stimulated at this point, releasing dopamine. Dopamine’s reputation centres around its reputation as the “feel good hormone.” It’s associated with feelings of euphoria, bliss, motivation, and concentration. But as I mentioned earlier, don’t be fooled by how great you feel, it’s only downhill from here! Soon after this point, your reactions would slow down, and you’d forget what you were doing whilst you were doing it. It is comparable to a state of drunkness from an onlookers perspective. Day 2 is when things start to get serious. Your body, slowly but surely, would start shutting down. At this point your body can’t metabolise glucose properly, leaving you with no energy. Your eyes would start to go red, and you’d appear more pale and wrinkly. Day 3… On day 3 you start to hallucinate as a result of not getting any REM sleep. So you’d start dreaming on the spot whilst fully conscious. You also start to break down the protein in your own muscles. Your body would continue to break down anything it can to get energy, fat, tissue, muscles, and at around the 2 week mark, your immune system would be so compromised you could die from a cold! Anytime after this you’d be expected to have a heart attack, and subsequently die. So, I have made it clear how important sleep is. 7-9 hours a night is recommended. And be sure to visit the doctor if you can’t sleep, or are always tired.

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