McConnors corner
Early To Bed, Early To Rise
By Sean McConnor
Jun 15, 2008 - 3:03:17 PM

Some of you may recall seeing the famous MAD magazine character, Alfred E. Neuman, on a poster with the caption: "What, me, worry?"  Well, a lot of folks are worrying these days about the high cost of gas, the economy, the war, and the list goes on. As a result, people are paying the price for the emotional rollercoaster ride.

The Associated Press reports that a whole lot of physical elements are manifesting themselves upon people who are stressed out these days. The gambit runs from stomach ailments to neurological problems, and more.  Not the least of the problems is sleep deprivation.

Sleeping problems include momentarily not breathing while asleep, insomnia over the course of a long period of time, and shortness of breath or chest pain. However, the list does not stop there; other things can happen too.

Dr. Chris Drake, a scientist at the Ford Hospital in Detroit, says that other things may occur such as the inability to make decisions correctly (you might miss a turn or go through a red light while driving) and weight gain, as weird as it sounds.

The hormones in your body get all mixed-up when you don't get enough sleep. There is reduction in leptin, which is an appetite suppressing hormone, when you don't sleep enough. At the same time ghrelin, an appetite stimulator, increases when you don't sleep.  Also, your lack of sleep affects your glucose levels, which can cause blood pressure problems.

So, if you are one of the people who aren't sleeping well, (and there must be millions), it is time to start getting the recommended seven to eight hours of sleep each night.  Here are some things to do:  develop a sleep schedule and stick to it; avoid exercising near bedtime; avoid coffee, alcohol, and nicotine before bed; don't pig out in the evening; and don't take late afternoon naps.

Times are rough now for just about everyone, with the world the way it is right now. All of us have to be alert and aware of our decisions. When your brain isn’t clear and can't cope because you are sleepy, you can't react and think like you should and must.

Get your sleep, and when things are rough, you will be like the MAD Magazine guy:"What, me, worry?"

© Copyright 2007 by