My beloved friend, Evelyne, suddenly died in what should have been a routine confinement for shortness of breath.
Computer graphics by Scott Garceau
Sleep deprivation kills
PURPLE SHADES - Letty Jacinto-Lopez (The Philippine Star) - August 13, 2019 - 12:00am

When you don’t get enough sleep, your immune system is not able to properly protect the body from infection.

She’s gone.

My beloved friend, Evelyne, suddenly died in what should have been a routine confinement for shortness of breath.  Just when she was getting better, she caught pneumonia in the hospital. 

Her son, Gabby, a doctor himself, prescribed the strongest antibiotic to combat this particular strain of pneumonia. When Gabby studied her medical chart delving deeper into the matter (“I covered all bases; what could I have possibly missed?”), there was nothing he could find to explain why she lost her grip.  Everything medically possible was done to save her life.

What did her in?

“Her body was too weak and it simply gave up,” cried Gabby.

Why?

Evelyne averaged three hours of sleep a night. She enjoyed staying up late when everyone had gone to bed so that she could clean up, putter around the house, play her music and even watch her favorite movies and drama series, undisturbed.  It was not as if she was under any kind of strain or stress, either.  She simply enjoyed being a night owl.

I am guilty of this, too, and a dozen more friends who are into some kind of hobby or pastime: painting, scrapbooking, writing, meditating, baking, cooking, composing, even making jewelry or beading. There are also those who stay awake to hear from family and friends from different time zones, like me.  Deep into the night, I’d exchange private jokes with them, emoticons flying right and left, which made us extremely happy, filling us with wonder and delight.  Staying awake never felt so good.

This is wrong. There have been sound medical findings on the benefits of sleeping on time.  Our body needs to turn off so that our cells and organs are given time to build and grow new cells, recharge and recover.  The best time to do that is at night.  (For those on the night shift, close curtains and blinds and get eight hours in bed).

“Sleeping helps wounds to heal faster and it restores sore or damaged muscles,” says Gabby.  “While asleep the body can produce more white blood cells that can attack viruses and bacteria that can hinder the healing process.  When you don’t get enough sleep, your immune system is not able to properly protect the body from infection.

“For seniors,” he continues, “sleeping may elude them, but if you get five to six hours daily, that would be acceptable.  However, try to aim for eight hours of sleep.”

Oh, Evelyne. We loved, we laughed, we feasted, we sang, we cried, we prayed, we shared memories — warm and loving — of precious times spent together.

You’ve gone to heaven. Too soon.

REST SLEEP DEPRIVATION
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