Some may say that getting into bed is one of the best parts of the day but for many college students the stresses of school and life cause sleep deprivation.
With the stress of finals looming over students in the next few weeks sleep is becoming less of a priority.
For LSU third year student Mackenzie Montiel getting into bed is the favorite part of her day, but due to a busy school schedule she does not always get the required amount of sleep.
She says, “On an average night without any tests or anything I usually get about seven hours of sleep, but when I have a lot of tests and things to do I get about four to six.”
Sleep deprivation is common among college students who get an average of six to six point nine hours of sleep per night. According to the National Sleep Foundation college age students need seven to nine hours of sleep.
According to the University of Georgia, some consequences of sleep deprivation are a weakened immune system, mental health issues, poor athletic performance and the consequence that effects a student’s education is a lower grade-point average.
LSU assistant director of Wellness and Health Promotion at the Student Health Center Kathy Saichuk says, “We don’t migrate our short-term memories into long term memories unless we sleep.So, pulling an all nighter, you blew that migration. So, if you studied a whole bunch of new information, and you stayed up all night you better hope you’re not too exhausted when you go to take that test because you’re not going to be able to recall that information.”
Montiel says stress from school is only one factor of her irregular sleeping patterns. The amount of time she spends on her phone and what she does throughout the day plays into how much sleep she gets.
She says, “Being more active during the day and getting all their homework and tests done during the day, maybe going for a workout so you’re tired by the time night comes around,” may help students fall asleep and stay asleep.
Montiel also says that putting down electronics and “getting rid of that screen time right before you go to bed definitely helps.”
Saichuk says ultimately it is the responsibility of students to learn time management and stay on track with school so they can get enough sleep. She says “sometimes it’s your own fault, and you have to revisit what it is and how you plan your schedule."
The National Sleep Foundation says using electronics before bed makes it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep.
The blue light given off by electronic devices before bed makes it harder for your body to release the sleep-inducing hormone melatonin.
People are encouraged to get of their electronics one to two hours before bed.