Looking to catch up on the latest discussions and research in the world of shuteye? I've got you covered. Here's this week's Nightcap:
But what if later school times aren't the answer?
The growing "start school later" movement says that pushing back first period can help teenagers, who are biologically wired to be night owls, get the sleep they need. And, while this position is supported by plenty of studies, researchers from the University of Surrey and Harvard Medical School argue that delaying school start times actually won't reduce sleep deprivation as much as decreasing nighttime light exposure will. [University of Surrey]
Nobody puts puppy on the floor
Experts differ as to whether it's okay to sleep with pets. But the potential health consequences of hitting the sack with Rover-the-Rhodesian ridgeback — allergies, bacteria-covered bed sheets — aren't dissauding pet owners from cuddling up to their furry best friends. About half of UK cat/dog owners share their beds with their pets, according to a new survey. (We also share some of our sleeping disorders with them.) [BBC]
Awake and under the knife
A growing number of patients are opting to forego anesthesia and remain conscious during surgery. Some people (me!) might grimmace at the thought of watching a doctor slice open their tendon. But surgery performed without general anesthesia is less expensive, often has fewer complications and tends to require less recovery time. That doesn't mean it's always a smooth process. Many doctors are learning how to adjust their behavior and bedside manners to operate on patients watching their every move. As for patients, "it's not for the faint of heart." [NYT]
Sad! might look like scared to a sleep-deprived person
When people pull all-nighters, a study found, they have trouble recognizing ambiguously happy and sad faces. But sleep deprivation doesn't seem to affect our ability to pick up on subtle facial cues of fear, anger and disgust. [Van Winkle's]
Big, bad blue light?
It's been proven that staring at blue light increases alertness. But, we actually don't have solid proof to back up the opposite claim — that removing blue light from devices helps us fall asleep. Dim green light might be just as disruptive to sleep as the blue-lit devil. [Wired]
The sleep-apnea defense is v. trendy for 2017
The exceedingly common sleep-breathing disorder has become the "go-to diagnosis in defending against cases of fatal car and train crashes." (And sometimes sexual assault charges.) And, while "not my fault; sleep apnea made me do it" might sound like a bogus excuse, sleep-crime experts say it's a legit defense — at least under the right circumstances. [NY Post]
The NBA is caught up in a controversy over...letting players rest?
NBA coaches for top teams including the Warriors and Cavaliers decided to keep key players off the court during recent games. Unduly demanding schedules, the coaches say, prevent players from being able to shine in every primetime game without risking injury. But fans don't want to shell out money to see the greats warming the bench. And the NBA commissioner says it's against the rules for coaches to rest players without giving proper notification. [The Guardian]