Students are undoubtedly sleeping a lot less than they should. With 68% of university students staying awake at night due to academic stress and 20% of students pulling all-nighters at least once a month, sleep deprivation is quickly becoming an epidemic.
University students being sleep deprived is often no surprise, but when 71% of university students are getting less than the recommended 8-hour sleep, we have to do something about it. Allowing sleep deprivation to become the norm and not addressing it as the important issue that it is, is extremely detrimental.
Why is this important?
Getting enough sleep and academic performance are intertwined. During sleep, our short-term memories are turned into long-term ones. So, everything you learned that day is stored as a short-term memory until you sleep and allow it to be turned into long-term memory, improving your memory retention.
Sleep deprivation does not only affect academic performance, it has detrimental effects on your physical health and mental health too.
Scientific research shows that sleep deprivation has adverse effects on your neuroendocrine and immune systems by increasing inflammatory molecules known as cytokines, as well as stress hormones like cortisol. Napping can highly reduce these effects, as shown by a 2015 study.
A study shows that drivers who get only 6 hours of sleep are more likely to cause an accident than those who had blood alcohol levels of 0.05%. With 0.05% being the legal drink driving limit in Scotland and 0.08% in England.
A simple solution is naps. Taking naps has been the consistently recommended solution to sleep deprivation. Both short (15-30 mins) and long (1-1.5 hours) are scientifically proven to help our brains recover from fatigue.
Some of the benefits of napping include:
They have a very positive effect on performance and reaction times. A NASA study shows that a 40-minute nap can improve performance by 34% and alertness by 100%.
Napping can boost the immune system, by reducing stress hormones like cortisol, and inflammatory molecules such as cytokines.
Naps improve memory retention
Napping improves physical stamina and performance
Looking at all of the benefits of napping on the body and mind, napping should be routine for all university students. Especially with its positive effects on the immune system, students would notice a massive decrease in sickness.
What can universities do to support students and solve their sleep deprivation issue? Invest in rest spaces.
In trying to improve their student wellbeing, the University of Edinburgh installed 2 nap pods in their library. 83% of students voted for this installation, and they quickly became the envy of workers and students everywhere else.
[Rest Space] created the best place to rest for students. Our innovative, smart and sustainable rest spaces are a great investment in the health and wellbeing of students.
If you would like to learn more about our product, please do get in touch with us to find out more about Rest Space.