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Discussion: Circadian Rhythms and Sleep

Despite all of the knowledge that scientists have about the function and process of sleep, it is not known how much sleep humans actually need. Furthermore, people may need more or less sleep at different stages of life. What is clear is that a great number of people report that they do not get enough sleep because once they go to bed, the sleep they seek does not come readily.

For this Discussion, you will explore circadian rhythms and consider exogenous and biological factors that influence these rhythms. Looking specifically at sleep, you will describe the brain regions that influence sleep and arousal and discuss the potential functions of sleep.

Note: For this Discussion, you are required to complete your initial post before you will be able to view and respond to your colleagues’ postings. Begin by clicking on the Post to Discussion Question link, and then selectCreate Thread to complete your initial post. Remember, once you click on Submit, you cannot delete or edit your own posts—and cannot post anonymously. Please check your post carefully before clicking on Submit.

To prepare:

  • Review this week’s Learning Resources and consider the role of circadian rhythms on the processes in the body, specifically on sleep. As you read, analyze the theories that explain the reasons we sleep and decide which resonates with you most.

By Day 3

Post a response to the following:

  • Define and describe circadian rhythms and discuss the external zeitgebers and the biological mechanisms that establish and maintain these rhythms in the body.
  • Sleep is one of the most obvious processes influenced by these rhythms. Describe the brain regions and neurotransmitters that bring about arousal and sleepiness in the brain.
  • Finally, speculate about the functions of sleep and describe at least one theory purporting to explain the reason why we sleep.
  • Zero plagiarizing, Quote work,’s

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