Tuesday, November 15, 2011

No Wonder I Can't Keep Students Awake

Seriously, myths are full of sex and violence.  High school students live for sex and violence, but there are days when the most grotesque details still put the young'uns to sleep while reading.  This Argus Leader story points to a reason.
A government report shows residents here sleep less than their neighbors, creating a health risk that hurts performance at work and school, specialists said. . . . .
South Dakota is in the second-worst group among the five. People here report getting inadequate sleep 11.5 to 13 nights every month, or more than one-third of the time. Iowa is in the middle group in the report. Minnesota, Montana and Wyoming are above average. North Dakota and Nebraska are in the best group.
The article indicates that it's unclear why South Dakotans sleep less than their neighbors.
Less clear is why South Dakota stands out. Dr. David Thomas at Sanford Health said long hours of winter darkness can lead to seasonal affected disorder that would disrupt sleep. The state has many single parents, people working two jobs and farmers working long days.
Those conditions should affect North Dakotans and Minnesotans more, however.  I suppose one reason that South Dakotans sleep less than their neighbors is that more of them work two jobs.  Worrying about money and work seems to disrupt my sleep patterns more than anything else, even a neurotic cat.

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