Four hours’ sleep a night ‘requires lengthy recovery’

Regularly getting less than four hours' sleep per night can make it hard for the brain to recover quickly, according to new research

Regularly getting less than four hours’ sleep per night can make it hard for the brain to recover quickly, according to new research

Not getting enough sleep in the week can be as harmful as going one night with no sleep at all, scientists have discovered.

Findings of a study at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, which have been published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, state that brain patterns show regular slumber restriction can have a negative effect on routines.

Dr Chiara Cirelli, associate professor of psychiatry at the School of Medicine and Public Health, who led the research, said: “Five days with only four hours of sleep per night results in cumulative deficits in vigilance and cognition and these deficits do not fully recover after one night of sleep.”

The trials were carried out on rats, using technology to monitor their brain output during periods of alertness and times of rest.

Recent comments in the Independent by sleep expert Nikki Cameron support the findings.

She warned that sleep deprivation is a “dangerous habit” and should be taken seriously.

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