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Personal Accounts of Events Leading to a Brain Shutdown

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As I stayed awake night after night doing my grueling homework, my eyelids feels heavy and my body feels like it has been broken into a million pieces. I become aware of the time, it is 4:30 in the morning. My bed feels warm and cushiony, beckoning me to sleep, my urge to sleep overpowers my urge to finish my homework. I tell myself that “I will only sleep for 10 minutes and then get back to my homework,” but that didn’t happen.

I woke up next morning at 12:49 at noon to my mom’s voice shouting at me, telling me to “get up and brush my teeth.” It felt as if I had only slept for ten minutes, but it had been eight hours. The rays of the sun shone through my room. I felt like I had been revived, from a coma. I sauntered up to the bathroom and gazed at my reflection in the mirror. I had dark circles under my eyes, like a zombie. I ask myself if losing one night of sleep can do this to me, what will losing a whole week will do to my body? I kept this thought at the back of my mind and went on with my day. It was getting late and the last ray’s of the sun were dying out. I had finished all my homework so I thought I would play some video games. I booted up my new shining red computer and waited for the green screen to load up that said restarting and a little loading sign. I play one match of a shooter known as Counter Strike: Global Offensive and started to go with the rhythm of the game. I played matches of the game, in a daze, not able to stop. The flashing bullets going across my screen and the bright red color of my weapon of choice were triggering a nerve in me that told me not to stop. At three in the morning I gave up to my body and went to bed. I had never appreciated my bed, but now it seemed like sleeping on a bed made of the most authentic feathers.

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I woke up next morning just in time for school. I rushed to my bathroom, and there they were the dark circles, but this time I felt like the energy had been sucked out of me. I dragged my bike to school, the leaves were falling from the trees and the strong wind blowing on my face. This should have made my adrenaline flow, but instead it made me yearn for my soft bed. I barely made it to my zero period, forcing my feet to step through my social studies class’s door, just as the bell rang. At night I wondered what would happen if I stayed awake night after. Will I eventually die of sleep deprivation? It turns out that if you don’t sleep “Your brain will just go to sleep, despite all of your conscious efforts to keep it at bay"(Erin halon). There is something known as micro-sleep which “is an episode of light sleep lasting five to 10 seconds [in which] the brain goes to sleep involuntarily”(BBC. This is like when you overload a computer and it shuts down. I asked my dad if he ever had an episode of micro-sleep and he said, “yeah, many timer”

“When” I replied “while driving” he said

I was shocked that your brain could shut down like that. In the sleep laboratory in the university of Chicago an experiment was conducted on rats to find what would happen if you are deprived of too much sleep. The results were astonishing. When the rats were forced to stay awake, all the rats eventually died. Because of hyper body metabolism “A condition of extreme weight loss and if not remedied my sleep, causes death”(BBC). Sleep deprivation can also cause “ a loss of memory”(BBC).

All the nights I stayed awake, studying for test, doing my homework, playing games, actually harmed me more than telling my teacher that I could not finish my work. Losing your memory or damaging your body is spine-chilling. The next night I went to sleep at 10:00 O’clock and got the 9 hours of sleep that is vital for your body. I think more people should stop working late into the night and have a good night’s sleep. I walk up to my bed and lay down. wondering that how much memory and strength I saved from going to bed early.

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