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Insomnia In College: A Sleepless Nightmare

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College students tend to be awake until late at night doing one thing or the other. However, sleep deprivation crops up slowly leading to physical and emotional problems.

Staying up till 3:00 AM seems fun to a school student living with their parents. The idea of going to bed and waking up at one’s own leisure sounds like a luxury school students crave. When these students enter college, live away from home, and dictate their sleep-cycle; that is when the effect of this idea is fully understood. The idea of staying up late in the night when everything becomes quiet, feels soothing and reading a book or watching a movie seems like the perfect match to the setting. Or maybe a good long conversation over text is also preferable. Well, a few random nights times turn into a habit and a rather unwanted one too.

The effects of sleep deprivation on the human body are significantly harmful. It leads to a weaker immune system, obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, anxiety, and much more. Talking about statistics, a survey report published in The Hindu said that about 93% Indians suffer from sleep deprivation with almost 87% leaving it untreated. As per brandongaille.com, 7 out of 10 students in college said they get less than the recommended amount of sleep. The reasons for these students varied from academic pressure to emotional issues.

So, what exactly is it about college life that brings this culture of staying awake until long? “The attention in college life turns towards not only keeping up with academics but also towards indulging in activities that build up my CV,” said Manan Kalra, a first-year student of the University of Delhi. It cannot be denied that the focus shifts towards career building rather than scoring marks. Outstations may also tend to adopt the habit of staying awake until night because of ill-disciplined lifestyle and lack of guidance from parents or guardians.

However, waking up at night is not necessarily due to just the academic pressure of college work. College life is a phase where we shift our focus on developing ourselves as a person. We are in a transition phase at the individual, social and emotional level. Talking about the nature of this habit, Dr Nidhi Prakash, Assistant Professor from the Department of Psychology said “College life is a stage where an individual becomes more conscious and aware of himself/herself. One starts emphasizing more upon things like self-image, social acceptability, and validation.”

It seems as if the very source of insomnia is not necessarily random. More importantly, it seems as if sleep deprivation at the college level is inevitable. The problem with the habit is that the positive effects are still a probability while the negative effect is certain. One may or may not be able to inject the skills or contemplate about being socially acceptable, but they certainly tamper with their body. We need to keep in mind the long-term implications of the lack of sleep on our body. Maybe its high-time we prioritize our health and well-being and give our sleep cycle the importance it requires.

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Karan Singhania

Feature Image Credits: Advil





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