Sleep for Success | Importance of Slumber for College Students - Kalkine Media

September 04, 2023 06:23 PM AEST | By Roland Branson (Guest)
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The time students spend in college can be both rewarding and fun. However, many students find campus life frustrating as they don’t have time to keep up with many assignments and tests. As students try to juggle the demands of academic life, work, and personal obligations, finding time for sleep and self-care becomes challenging. However, evidence shows that students need about seven hours of sleep each night. Students who put off sleep to work on assignments or party risk losing concentration during the day. Here is what you need to know about sleep and why it makes sense to prioritize quality slumber when on campus.

What Amount of Sleep Do Students Need?

The national sleep foundation states that the amount of sleep people need depends on age. For instance, high school students need about eight to ten hours of uninterrupted sleep each night. On the other hand, college students need either seven or nine hours of sleep to function optimally.

On how to judge the number of hours you should spend sleeping, you can determine by observing how much sleep you get without getting up during vacations or holidays. Unfortunately, many college students get way less sleep than they need for success. Students can create time for more sleep when they buy essay online.

What Are the Effects of Sleep Deprivation?

Enough studies have explored the effects of sleep deprivation, with findings showing that students struggle with many complications because they don’t get enough sleep. According to recent research, going for more than 18 hours without sleep can have similar negative outcomes as having a blood alcohol content of 0.05%. If you stay awake for over 20 hours, the effects will be worse than the legal limit of 0.8% BAC. Evidence shows that drowsy driving is the cause of more than three hundred thousand accidents each year in the United States.

Students who don’t get the needed sleep also struggle with daytime sleepiness and fatigue. This means that failing to obtain the slumber you require can diminish your productivity and make it hard to concentrate during lectures and when studying. Sleep-deprived students also struggle with frequent mood changes and are prone to short temper and irritability.

Prolonged sleep deprivation has also been shown to have serious implications for student’s mental and physical health. For instance, research has shown that chronic sleep deprivation is tied to weight gain, obesity, and cardiovascular disease. The long-term effect of missing sleep on your mental health can be serious, as evidence shows chronic sleep to be linked to depression and anxiety.

Why Is Sleep Important for College Students

While prioritizing sleep is a problem for most college students, evidence shows that going to bed early and getting quality slumber has numerous benefits. Below are some benefits of getting quality sleep:

  • Sleep Helps Academic Performance

Research shows that students who prioritize sleep tend to report improvements in their academic performance. It is widely accepted that students lacking enough sleep struggle with cognitive abilities and can experience reduced academic performance. The bulk of research regarding sleep deprivation has been performed on adults, but most of the side effects can also happen in younger adults. Studies available on college students show that continued sleep deprivation can harm academic performance in multiple ways.

First, failing to get enough sleep the previous night decreases attention and focus. According to studies, the capacity to concentrate when studying or during lectures is important to learning and academic performance. However, sleep deprivation reduces alertness, meaning you won’t be able to pay attention to what matters.  

Another way sleep affects academic performance is through impaired memory and slow processing. According to experts, sleep offers time for memory encoding, which allows for a period when the brain stores and strengthens the recollection of images and thoughts. Without enough sleep, memories may not form well, and students may find it hard to remember stored information. Short sleep durations also reduce students’ sharpness and slow down reaction times. This means it interferes with the capacity to absorb and analyze information speedily. Most importantly, sleep deprivation reduces creativity.

  • Sleep Helps With Stress Management

There is also considerable research that links the quality of your sleep and your ability to cope with stress. According to the findings, students who make sleep a priority are able to handle the stress that comes with student life. The cycle is complicated since stress diminishes the quality of your sleep, and the lesser number of hours you sleep, the more stressed you feel. In the long term, prolonged sleep can result in serious psychiatric complications. The worst-case scenario is that a combination of sleep deprivation and stress can result in more severe mental health problems like depression and general anxiety.

The good news is that prioritizing sleep can positively affect stress management. According to evidence, students who get about eight hours of sleep every night are better able to handle stressful situations. Quality sleep is also connected to better mood regulation. Furthermore, when you are rested, your level of productivity increases, which means you don’t have to stress about urgent deadlines. Remember, the less stressed you feel during the day, the faster you can sleep at night.

The Bottom Line

The secret to getting quality sleep as a college student is establishing a healthy and reliable routine. This means sleeping and getting up around the same time each night. The very first step will be recognizing that sleep is crucial to your well-being and academic performance. Coursework and urgent projects will always exist as a student. However, you can’t keep postponing sleep to work on tasks or prepare for tests. According to evidence, the better you sleep, the easier it will be to get work done.

You also need to establish healthy bedtime patterns that will promote the quality of your sleep. This will mean liming caffeine intake close to bedtime. It also means avoiding alcohol as it interferes with the quality of sleep you get. Students also need to avoid having electronic screens like phones and tablets around their sleeping areas. Engaging in daily exercise will benefit the quality of your sleep while helping with weight management and overall health.


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