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Most of us have pulled an all-nighter at some stage, and remember feeling fatigued and drowsy the next day...
Missing one night of sleep causes memory impairment and a reduced attention span, so if you’re considering staying up to get some last-minute revision done for that exam tomorrow - you’d probably be better off getting some decent shut-eye instead.
Did you also know, that just 24 hours lack of sleep results in a mental impairment equivalent to being too drunk to drive a car?
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After a second day without sleep, you really start to feel the effects. You’ll experience a marked loss of concentration, as well as poor coordination.
You’ll start to physically show the signs as well, with bags appearing under the eyes and a lack of lustre in your hair and skin.
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After 3 days without sleep, you’ll start experiencing uncontrollable periods of micro-sleep (temporary episodes of sleep lasting for up to 30 seconds)
This is where the body really starts to fight it, and you might find yourself experiencing muscle twitches, blurred vision and nausea.
Previous known cases of sleep-deprivation started experiencing dramatic and uncharacteristic mood swings after 3 days (as in the case of Randy Gardner).
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5 days of total sleep deprivation will end in severe paranoia and hallucinations (as experienced by Peter Tripp).
Expect delusional episodes and extreme irritability
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After 8 days, physical functions really start to slow down.
American DJ Peter Tripp lasted 8.4 days (201 hours) without sleep in 1959. In his last few days he could not perform simple tasks such as reciting the alphabet, and questioned whether he really was Peter Tripp.
After his wake-athon, Tripp slept for 13 hours and 13 minutes.
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Known cases of people staying awake for 11 days or more shows how they experience fragmented thinking and prolonged episodes of unresponsive ‘conscious stupor’.
Randy Gardner stayed awake for 11 days (264 hours) in 1965. On the 11th day, he was asked to subtract 7 repeatedly, starting from 100. He stopped when he got to 65...and said he had forgotten what he was doing.
.....Sleep deprived rats start to die after 11 days.
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Maureen Weston of the UK went without sleep for 18.7 days (449) hours) after entering a rocking-chair competition. This is the longest, official record of no sleep.
There are many claims of people who have remained awake for longer, but none can be verified.
Guinness World Records no longer recognises “lack of sleep” as a category because long term sleep deprivation is thought to pose serious health risks, both physically and mentally.