Sleep. We all know it’s important. But so many of us don’t actually get enough of it. Doctors recommend 7-9 hours of sleep per night for adults, with children and teens needing even more to support a healthy lifestyle.

However, with work and school taking over our daily lives more and more each day, sleep has gotten pushed to the back burner. In an age where technology rules our lives it seems as though cell phones have become more important than sleep.

Those who rely on their cell phones for morning alarms, often sleep with their phone in their bed. By doing this, there exists a tendency to reach for the phone when sleep isn’t coming. But in doing this, it actually prolongs sleep for that night and further interrupts your future sleep schedule.

Not getting enough sleep each night, especially for several nights in a row, can have severe negative health effects on the body. For example, it can cause weight gain, weaken the immune system, and increase the risk of certain cancers/diabetes, as well as increasing the risk of accidents occurring while operating heavy machinery because you run the risk of falling asleep while operating.

However, when you do get enough sleep each night, your body thanks you for it! Getting a good night’s sleep can lead to a sharper brain, a positive mood boost, a healthier heart as adequate rest allows the heart and blood vessels to recover, steadier blood sugar, and a stronger immune system.

You can never “catch up” on the sleep you’ve missed. Instead, sleeping in on the weekends when you get up early every weekday, in order to “make up” the sleep you’ve missed from the week, actually damages your sleep schedule. Try to get into the habit of going to bed at the same time each night and getting up at the same time every morning, and you’ll be amazed at the difference you see in how you feel and how your look, in a very short amount of time!

So, put the phone away, don’t let work take over your life, and get some sleep! Your body will thank you for it!

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About the Author: Meghan Walsh

Hi! My name is Meghan Walsh. I’m originally from New York, but I am currently a junior at Providence College, studying abroad here in Rome through CEA study abroad. I am a Management and History double major. I love writing and photography, both of which I hope to become better at during my time here! I’m so excited for my internship with MedinAction, and cannot wait to see what the future holds in store for me here in Rome!