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Re: Sleep Deprivation improves longevity

Posted by Jost on October 13, 2006, at 21:53:16

In reply to Sleep Deprivation improves longevity, posted by tessellated on October 10, 2006, at 12:25:41

It's not clear to me that longevity is affected, if you take out accidents caused by some sort of mental exhaustion and reduced judgment-- rather than, the benefits of sleep deprivation per se.

I also have to wonder, because I've read that serious accidents, like Chernobyl and Bopal, were caused by sleep deprivation--perhaps aggravated by shift changes. Perhaps that was urban myth-- I'm not sure. But ingeneral, I do wonder about the over all thesis.

If people with 3.5 hours of sleep (ie those with extreme sleep deprivation) outlive those with 7.5 hours of sleep a night-- I really have to wonder if there's a design flaw in the study (a different one from Kripke's, but also cited-- aside from the issue of what it's like to live that way, which is a secondary problem.

Science generates counterintuitive facts-- but still.


Only part of article that addresses the reasons for longevity:

"Hypnotic drugs have dangerous side effects, Kripke says. For one, they reduce fear of risky behavior, such as driving fast. Ironically, that could result in the inability to see that the sleeping pills are doing more harm than good over time.

A recent study published in the British Medical Journal showed that the risks of taking sleeping pills (benzodiazepines and other sedatives, in this case) outweighed the benefits among people over 60 in a series of studies carried out between 1966 and 2003. The pills helped people fall asleep and they slept more, but they were twice as likely to slip and fall or crash a car due to dizziness from the pills than they were to get a better night's sleep. "




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