Wakefulness

Fall Asleep and Wake Up Refreshed On This High-Tech Pillow

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Nutrition, physical activity and sleep are the cornerstones of health. Yet, sleep seems to be the most overlooked, with electronic devices, light pollution, stress, busy schedules, and Netflix all standing in the way. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention an estimated 50-70 million US adults have sleep or wakefulness disorder, and more than a third of adults are getting less than the recommended minimum of seven hours of sleep. People with sleep insufficiency are more likely to suffer from chronic diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, depression, and obesity, as well as from cancer, increased mortality, and reduced quality of life and productivity.

Sleep is my greatest enemy.

— Netflix US (@netflix) April 17, 2017

To tackle some of the causes for the reduced quantity and quality of our sleep, a team of LA designers and engineers has created the Sunrise Pillow, a pillow that helps you fall asleep and wake up in the most optimal and natural way.

As the creators of the pillow explain, we have stopped falling asleep and waking up naturally. At night, we stay up late even if we are tired, with blue light beaming from our devices and hindering the production of melatonin, the hormone that helps us sleep. In the morning, alarm clocks wake us up abruptly regardless of our sleep cycle and if daylight doesn’t enter our rooms our bodies don’t receive the necessary signals to stop producing melatonin. And during the night, of course, there are…

The Science of Sleepwalking

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If a member of your family sleepwalks, or you do, most of the time it’s nothing so much as odd, and sometimes comical. For some though, it’s a different thing. Welsh-Australian artist Lee Hadwin is only creatively productive when he’s asleep — the rest of the time he has no special talent for sketching, his métier. (How appropriate he exhibits at the Rise Gallery.)

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Lee Hadwin (LEE HADWIN)

Sleepwalkers can also be a danger to themselves (poor Olive Oyl), or violent to others: Toronto’s Kenneth Parks who drove, asleep, 23 kilometers in 1987 to brutally murder the mother-in-law with whom he had a fond waking relationship.

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Kenneth Parks meets the press outside court

The number of people who sleepwalk is around 4%, and it’s on the rise, partially due to sleep medicines like Ambien. Philip Jaekl, writing for Aeon, explains what the latest science suggests is happening when people exhibit this uniquely human characteristic.

Scientists believe sleepwalking occurs when two areas of the brain — the limbic region of the brain that deals with raw emotions and the area of the cortex that manages complex motor activity — remain awake while the areas that would otherwise mitigate their primitive impulses — notably…