Don't Hit The Snooze Button

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Don't Hit The Snooze Button

When the alarm goes off after a late bedtime and a restless night, most of us are tempted to hit the snooze button. Resist the urge—it'll only make things worse. Mary A. Carskadon, PhD, a professor of psychiatry and human behavior at Brown University, explains to Huffington Post that hitting the snooze button causes what's known as drockling: the phenomenon of drifting in and out of sleep in the early morning. Drockling feels great, and there's a reason. Your body temperature naturally warms up a couple of hours before your body is ready to wake up. If your alarm clock wakes you up before you're ready, your body temperature is at its lowest, and braving your cold bedroom can feel like the most terrible punishment. In that scenario, your cozy covers feel like the greatest thing ever. As your head sinks back into your pillow, however, know that you're making your morning that much harder.

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Key Facts to Know

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    The body begins preparing to be awake in the hour before you naturally wake up. 0:30

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    When your alarm wakes you, it often cuts into your body's natural process of waking that releases certain chemicals that make you feel awake. 0:40

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    Being tired is not only a product of lack of sleep, it can be caused by an inconsistent sleep schedule. 1:43

Lack Of Sleep Really Does Make You Eat More

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Lack Of Sleep Really Does Make You Eat More

Late nights and early mornings can make even those with the strongest willpower give in to temptation and head for the drive-thru. But being short on time might not be the only reason you eat badly during busy weeks. According to research, lack of sleep is actually telling your body to eat more.

Microsleep Is A Lightning-Quick Bout Of Unconsciousness

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Microsleep Is A Lightning-Quick Bout Of Unconsciousness

Usually, you're either awake or asleep. Usually. But the truth is that sleep isn't an all-or-nothing condition—part of your brain can stay awake while you sleep, and part of your brain can be asleep while you're awake. One way the latter occurs is in microsleep: several-second episodes of unconsciousness, which happen most often in a sleep-deprived brain during monotonous tasks like driving, listening to a lecture, or watching a movie. Sometimes when this happens, you know it: the movement of your chin falling to your chest jerks you awake. But often, you don't.

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Key Facts to Know

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    People who sleep 6–8 hours per night tend to live longer. 0:23

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    In some cases, going three days without sleep has resulted in hallucinations. 1:18

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    Fatal familial insomnia is a rare genetic disease that causes insomnia, dementia, and death. 2:12

The Money You Make Depends On The Sleep You Get

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The Money You Make Depends On The Sleep You Get

We know that sleep is good for health, but how important is it for income? To find out, economists Matthew Gibson and Jeffrey Shrader designed a study that compared the wages of one group of people to another group that got an hour less sleep per week, on average. But instead of controlling the participants in giant sleep labs, they took the inspired approach of examining cities on opposite ends of their respective time zones. Amarillo, Texas, for example, is on the western edge of the Central Time Zone, whereas Huntsville, Alabama is on the eastern edge. Even though their clocks read the same time, Amarillo gets about an hour more sunlight than Huntsville does, which means that Amarilloans generally go to bed later. Unfortunately, the business day starts with the clock, not the sunrise, so both cities still rise at roughly the same time. The economists found that this one-hour increase in weekly sleep worked out to a 4.5% long-term increase in wages. The take-home message? You can't always control where on the time zone you live, but you're largely in charge of how much sleep you get, so set a bedtime and stick to it! Learn more about the importance of sleep with the videos below.

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Key Facts to Know

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    In a lifetime, a person will spend 24 years asleep. 0:13

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    After a few nights of sleep deprivation, the body can fully recover with a few nights of good sleep. 1:04

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    The ideal average length of sleep is seven to eight hours, but it may vary from person to person. 2:31

Where Exactly Did Waterbeds Come From?

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Where Exactly Did Waterbeds Come From?

Even if you've never slept or sat on a waterbed, you've surely heard of the uniquely fluid mattress alternative. The water bed was invented in 1968 by Charles Hall, after he was given a college design assignment to "design something to improve human comfort." Hall, inspired by the warm comfort of a whirlpool bath, filled a chair with Jello. The resulting chair weighed 300 lbs, so he tried a different approach. He created the "Liquid Support for Human Bodies" patent for the waterbed, which was an instant hit among his classmates. The rest of the country latched onto his innovative creation, and waterbeds took off. During the peak of their popularity in the 1970s and '80s, waterbeds made up one out of every five beds sold. More than 40 years later, Hall has said it's time for a new and improved waterbed to make a comeback. We've collected some awesome videos on this topic. Watch them now to learn more.