I was always under the impression that sleep deprivation would have only transitory, superficial effects on brain function, such as temporary drowsiness or impairment.
However, that article states that the brain "grows", or "learns, during the LAST stage of the sleep cycle, which should ideally last 9.5 hours for teenagers.
Anyways, I was wondering how accurate this information is. I know plenty of intelligent, charismatic, overachieving people who get far, far less than 9.5 hours a night (and therefore should completely "skip" the whole learning phase of sleep?). I mean... the whole culture behind highly ambitious people, from college students who pull all-nighters to i-bankers who work 100 hours/week, suggest that these people actually thrive on sleep deficiencies.
I know that when I do get a lot of sleep, I can become just as lethargic as when I'm undersleeping, and furthermore, it makes me calm and lazier :)
I am a little worried now, because sleep deprivation has become a habit for me, and now I find out that I might be causing long-term harm.