Disrupting biorhythms 

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  • Created by: 08rmorris
  • Created on: 04-04-15 14:47
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  • Disrupting biorhythms
    • In the natural environment zeitgebers normally change slowly (light levels )
      • However in modern society, zeitgebers can change quickly
        • This can have a negative effect on our ability to function
          • Slowing reaction times
          • impairing problem-sloving skills
          • limiting our ability to concentrate
    • JET LAG
      • 1. Jet planes allow fast ravel to different time zones
        • Leaving the UK at 9am means that you'd get to New York at about 4am UK time. Local time would be 11am
      • 2. Consequently you'll feel sleepy at an earlier (local)time
        • If you then went to sleep you would wake up earlier and be out of sync. It appears to adapt by forcing yourself to stay awake.
      • 3. It can take about a week to fully synchronise to a new time zone.
        • Wegman et al (1986) found that travelling east to west (phase delay) seems easier to adapt to than travelling west to east (phase advance)
      • 4. Schwartz et al (1995) found that baseball teams from the east coast of the USA got better results travelling to play in the west than teams based in the west did travelling to play in the east
    • SHIFT WORK
      • Modern work patterns mean some people wok shifts throughout the 24-hour period, distributing their sleep cycle
      • Czeisler et al (1982) studies workers at a factory hose shift patterns appeared to cause sleep and health problems
        • The researchers recommended 21 day shifts (allowing more time for workers to adapt), and changing gifts forwards in time (phase delay)
          • after implementing the changes productivity and hob satisfaction increased
          • However, this has a dramatic impact on their social lives
    • Research on Biological Rhythms has limitations
      • 1. Findings from animal studies can't accurately be generalised to humans
        • humans have greater adaptability
      • 2. Studies have deprived humans of natural light have still allowed artificial light
        • Which may give many of the benefits of natural light - this reduces the validity of these studies
      • 3.Things like individual differences need further study
        • It's difficult t determine whether a person's lifestyle is a cause or effect of their biological rhythms
      • 4. If we fully understand what causes the problems linked to jet lag and shift work we can minimise or avoid them
        • reducing accidents in working environments
          • e.g. taking time to naturally adjust, or using drugs to reduce the effects of sleep deprivation

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