By: Justin Humphries

Nearly 10 per cent of Canadians have chronic sleep disorder. Students who are sleep deprived may see their performance at school begin to suffer.

For many Algonquin students, nothing feels worse than hearing your alarm clock ringing while your body needs a few more hours of sleep in the morning.

Sleeping is a favourite past time for many post-secondary students around the world and that’s because they simply don’t get enough of it. According to statistics online, 7.5 per cent of Canadians have chronic sleeping disorder. Algonquin students are no exception to finding enough time to sleep while also finding the time to relax and study.

Elizabeth Pryer, a mental health nurse at the college, regularly deals with students who have developed sleeping problems.

“Usually, the cause of sleeping disorders for students is stress,” Pryer said. “The most common way to fix this is to try to go to bed at a good time and change your lifestyle.”

Sleeping is easier said than done for most students. Studies show that students who are sleep deprived perform worse on tests and most daily activities according to Pryer

“Students are less alert when they haven’t got a good amount of sleep,” Pyrer said. “Usually the best time to go to sleep is 7 to 9 hours before you need to get out of bed.”

A recent survey that was conducted at Algonquin showed 14 out of 20 students considered themselves to be sleep deprived. The most common problems were either stress from school or their personal life the survey showed.

Thomas James McMahon, a first-year mechanical engineering student, spent most of his nights last semester trying to sleep. The stress of school for him was almost too much to handle.

“It’s my first year of college and it was pretty stressful for me,” McMahon said. “It’s only getting better, though. I’m not as stressed anymore and sleeping has been easier.”

The stress that comes with life is unavoidable for most people, said Pryer.

“The easiest way to deal with stress is to simply prepare yourself or occupy your mind with other things,” Pryer said. “I don’t suggest taking medication unless you’ve been diagnosed with a sleeping disorder. The easiest and always best way is to change your lifestyle.”

Students at Algonquin and around the world have issues with sleeping. No one can go without sleep, but students don’t get enough of it. If you’re having sleeping problems, taking the proper steps to a healthy life style is the best way to solve them. According to Pryer, there are many clinics in Ottawa that can help you with your sleeping disorder.