How to stay awake for a long period of time

How to stay awake for a long period of time

The easy experimental answer to this question is 264 hours (about 11 days). In 1965, Randy Gardner, a 17-year-old high school student, set this apparent world-record for a science fair. Several other normal research subjects have remained awake for eight to 10 days in carefully monitored experiments. None of these individuals experienced serious medical, neurological, physiological or psychiatric problems. On the other hand, all of them showed progressive and significant deficits in concentration, motivation, perception and other higher mental processes as the duration of sleep deprivation increased. Nevertheless, all experimental subjects recovered to relative normality within one or two nights of recovery sleep. Other anecdotal reports describe soldiers staying awake for four days in battle, or unmedicated patients with mania going without sleep for three to four days.

The more difficult answer to this question revolves around the definition of “awake.” As mentioned above, prolonged sleep deprivation in normal subjects induces altered states of consciousness (often described as “microsleep”), numerous brief episodes of overwhelming sleep, and loss of cognitive and motor functions. We all know about the dangerous, drowsy driver, and we have heard about sleep-deprived British pilots who crashed their planes (having fallen asleep) while flying home from the war zone during World War II. Randy Gardner was “awake” but basically cognitively dysfunctional at the end of his ordeal.

In the case of rats, however, continuous sleep deprivation for about two weeks or more inevitably caused death in experiments conducted in Allan Rechtschaffens sleep laboratory at the University of Chicago. Two animals lived on a rotating disc over a pool of water, separated by a fixed wall. Brainwaves were recorded continuously into a computer program that almost instantaneously recognized the onset of sleep. When the experimental rat fell asleep, the disc was rotated to keep it awake by bumping it against the wall and threatening to push the animal into the water. Control rats could sleep when the experimental rat was awake but were moved equally whenever the experimental rat started to sleep. The cause of death was not proven but was associated with whole body hypermetabolism.

In certain rare human medical disorders, the question of how long people can remain awake raises other surprising answers, and more questions. Morvans fibrillary chorea or Morvans syndrome is characterized by muscle twitching, pain, excessive sweating, weight loss, periodic hallucinations, and severe loss of sleep (agrypnia). Michel Jouvet and his colleagues in Lyon, France, studied a 27-year-old man with this disorder and found he had virtually no sleep over a period of several months. During that time he did not feel sleepy or tired and did not show any disorders of mood, memory, or anxiety. Nevertheless, nearly every night between 9:00 and 11:00 p.m., he experienced a 20 to 60-minute period of auditory, visual, olfactory, and somesthetic (sense of touch) hallucinations, as well as pain and vasoconstriction in his fingers and toes. In recent investigations, Morvans Syndrome has been attributed to serum antibodies directed against specific potassium (K + ) channels in cell and nerve membranes.

Another rare disorder, Fatal Familial Insomnia (FFI), is an autosomal dominate disease that is invariably fatal after about six to 30 months without sleep. FFI is probably misnamed because death results from multiple organ failure rather than sleep deprivation. The pathological processes include degeneration of the thalamus and other brain areas, over-activity of the sympathetic nervous system, hypertension, fever, tremors, stupor, weight loss, and disruption of the body’s endocrine systems. FFI belongs to a class of infectious prion diseases that include Mad Cow Disease.

The side effects of staying in bed all day include development of bedsores and body aches, especially in the lower back. Lying in bed all day is also associated with an increased risk of stress and depression, and some other psychological and cardiovascular ailments.

There aren’t many people in the world who leave their bed as soon as they hear the alarm (let alone before it!). The idea of lazing around in bed has been around for centuries, but it has gained unprecedented popularity among the masses since the dawn of technological progress. Everything has become so easy that we barely have to leave bed to do anything, and therefore, end up spending even more time lying around indolently.

How to stay awake for a long period of time

I must admit that I snooze the alarm more than I should, so much so that I sometimes wish someone would pay me to stay in bed. Well, this dream came true for Drew Iwanicki when he volunteered for a study conducted by NASA.

NASA experimented to study the effects of laying in bed for days

In 2014, NASA conducted a study to determine the nature and magnitude of the deterioration of human bones and muscles in space. The study required Drew Iwanicki (the volunteer) to lay down on a bed for 70 days straight, without getting up for any purpose whatsoever (except for a 30-minute window where he could prop himself up on his elbows to eat!).

Although the study (titled “CFT 70 (Countermeasure and Functional Testing in Head-Down Tilt Bed Rest Study”) earned him a paycheck of $18,000, it was no walk in the park!

The study found that if a person lies down with their legs raised at an angle, more blood will flow to their head, making their face look puffy. These conditions are pretty similar to the experience of space travel. Here is a detailed description by Drew Iwanicki himself about how he felt during and after the study.

However, no person would lie in bed for days unless they are hospitalized or paid to do so. We usually enjoy these guilty pleasures only for a few hours. This begs the question… is the habit of lying around in bed for hours at a stretch bad for our health too?

Is it bad to stay in bed all day?

Of course, it is!

How to stay awake for a long period of time

Lying down too much can be detrimental to your health (Photo Credit: Piotr Marcinski/Shutterstock)

It is not just this particular position that can be bad for the body, but too much bed rest in any position can be very harmful to the overall well-being of an individual.

You must have noticed that there are only rare occasions when you lie for more than 6-7 hours without making any kind of movement. You move a little by twitching, turning, or shifting your weight during your sleep. If you don’t move at all, you can have pressure ulcers, more commonly known as bedsores. These are caused when, due to a lack of movement, the disruption of blood throughout the skin causes certain regions of the skin to perish.

There are a few different stages of bedsores; if bedsores hit Stage 4, then they can negatively affect bones. In extreme cases, bedsores can even kill people. This is why nurses continually change the position of paralytic patients.

Side effects of staying in bed for too long

Even if bedsores were not an issue, lying in bed for too long does have other drawbacks or ill-effects. A survey conducted during a 2004 study published in the journal Joint, Bone, and Spine found that patients with lower back pain, who were prescribed bed rest by doctors, came back with complaints of chronic pain 32% of the time.

While some bed rest can make people suffering from back pain feel better, too much bed rest can prove to be counterproductive. This is because it results in the weakening of muscles, including the ones that support the backbone. Surprisingly, people can also develop constipation and other gastrointestinal problems when muscles lose their conditioning and tone.

Moreover, the inactivity associated with staying in bed for long hours increases the risk of damaging the veins (especially those of the pelvis and legs) and developing blood clots. This situation can also lead to a deadly pulmonary embolism condition if the clot breaks away and enters the lungs.

Our mental health and sense of well-being also take a hit due to being confined to bed. Research that studied the psychological effects of bed rest in people observed a tendency to develop depression and neurosis through Zung’s self-rating depression scale and a General Health Questionnaire.

In another study published in the Journal of Applied Physiology in 2008, rats were put in a specific position similar to what humans assume during bed rest. It was observed that rats displayed signs of depression and stress after a period of only 2 weeks. Afterward, they developed more psychological and cardiovascular disorders, thanks to the prolonged period of bed rest to which they were subjected.

Psychological and physical ill-effects of extended periods of bed rest have also been found in pregnant women who were sent to bed due to complications in pregnancies. These effects included depression, anxiety, headache, muscle atrophy, and weight loss. (Source)

A moderate amount of bed rest good for you

If taken in correct amounts, bed rest is not all bad. On the contrary, it can be a good thing, especially for those who have suffered from a concussion or some other brain injury, as it helps restore the brain’s normal activities.

As it turns out, bed rest is not inherently evil; it only becomes so when it’s not regulated. After all, too much of anything is bad.

Do yourself a favor, and don’t laze around in bed unnecessarily for extended periods of time. Get out and see the world!

Also, if you are curious about why sitting in the same position even for an hour makes you feel uncomfortable, but sleeping for a good seven to eight hours doesn’t, we have answered it for you. Check this article out!

Do you remember why it isn’t a good idea to remain in bed for long durations of time?

I t might be due to the darkness that accompanies shorter days, or the invasion of warmer, comfier clothes into the winter workplace, but now is the time when long hours, slouching, slumping, and straining dominate the office. Clean up your act around the computer, before bad habits lead to poor health.

Here are five ways to make sure your computer desk doesn’t become the death of you.

1. Give your monitor a second look.

If your screen is planted directly on your desktop, it’s time to ask management for a raise — for your computer’s display. According to Dr. Jim Sheedy, director of the Vision Performance Institute at Pacific University, the top of your the screen should be level with your eyes. The ideas is to get the eyes looking down about 10 degrees. If it’s any lower or higher, computer users will adapt to it by moving their head. If your screen is to low, your head points down, causing neck and back aches. High displays, meanwhile, contribute to dry eye syndrome.

2. Poor posture? Take it on the chin.

Poor posture is something that every office-based employee should consider throughout their day. Most people sitting at a computer get drawn into the screen, which means they crane their necks forward. This imbalance puts strain on the neck and spine. It’s like holding a bowling ball with one hand, says Dr. James Bowman, of Portland, Ore.-based Solutions Chiropractic. If your arm is vertical underneath, it puts less strain on the muscles, but lean that ball forward and your muscles have to compensate to keep it aloft. Sitting at a desk, that bowling ball is actually our head, so Bowman recommends chin retractions, or making a double chin, to keep the neck and spine lined up underneath.

“It’s probably the most effective single exercise you can do for the upper back and neck,” he says.

3. Stand up for yourself.

The modern workplace was built around the concept of sitting, but humans’ ability to stand goes back millions of years. Buck the trend of the office era with a standing desk — or, if that’s too radical, a sit-stand workstation. According to research out of the University of Minnesota and the Mayo Clinic, sit-stand workstations helped workers replace 25 percent of their sitting time with standing up, which can increase their sense of well being and decreased their fatigue and appetite. The Jarvis Desk can go from 26-inches to 51-inches at the push of a button, lifting up to 350 pounds of whatever’s on your desk—including multiple monitors.

“I definitely feel healthier standing while working as it causes me to be more focused on my posture and ‘hold’ myself better in terms of my stomach and shoulders especially,” says Dan McCormack, who uses a Jarvis Desk at his home office in Austin, Texas.

4. Move it or lose it.

But why stand when you could walk? Many offices around the country are getting wise to treadmill desks, which can help workers burn 100 calories more per hour over sitting, according to a study by the National Institutes of Health.

“The most important thing is to switch it up and work in different positions throughout the day,” says Emily Couey, Eventbrite’s vice president of people. The online event ticketing service offers multiple workspace options including traditional sitting desks, standing desks, and treadmill desks, which Couey says “people love, because it allows them move while they work — especially those with fitness trackers counting their daily steps.”

5. Pace yourself.

All work and no play makes Jack a bad employee. Whether it’s on their phone in the bathroom or on the computer in their cube, everyone takes sanity breaks to check their Facebook or read some news. The Pomodoro Technique even encourages this kind of behavior by breaking tasks into “pomodoros,” intense 25 minute work bursts, followed by five-minute breaks.

Named because they can be measured using little tomato-shaped kitchen timers (Pomodoro is Italian for tomato), this method lets people work intensely and stave off distraction, yet rewards them with time to goof off, as well. If you don’t have a tomato timer handy, there are a lot of apps online to keep track of your sessions. But Francesco Cirillo, the technique’s founder, recommends using the real deal.

“You have to be able to actually wind it up,” Cirillo says in his book, The Comodoro Technique. “The act of winding up the Pomodoro is a declaration of your determination to start working on the activity at hand.”

How to stay awake for a long period of timeMichael Homnick

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If you’ve ever wished that the screen on your Android phone or tablet stayed on longer before going to sleep, you’re not alone. Luckily, this can easily be adjusted in the settings with just a few taps. Not only that, you can prevent your Android device from sleeping while it’s charging, too.

The term ‘screen timeout’ refers to the time it takes for your smartphone or tablet to go to sleep (the screen turns off) after you’ve stopped interacting with it. The average screen timeout sits around 30 seconds to one minute, depending on your device. For many users, this is acceptable, but there are times that you might wish that your phone didn’t go to sleep so quickly.

Maybe you’re looking at a recipe on your tablet in the kitchen, your hands are covered in food, and you need to get to the next step. Maybe you’re reading a walkthrough for a video game and just want to glance over to see what to do next without pausing. Here’s how you get your screen to stay on longer.

How to stay awake for a long period of time

Depending on your phone, the Display Settings can appear in a tab or window, but will you give the same options.

To get started, go to the Settings > Display. In this menu, you’ll find a Screen timeout or Sleep setting. Tapping this will allow you to change the time it takes your phone to go to sleep.

How to stay awake for a long period of time

Certain phones offer more screen timeout options.

Select the timeout option that you’d like, and you’re done. Keep in mind that the display is one of the biggest battery hogs on your phone, and a longer screen timeout setting can, and likely will, lead to faster battery drain.

Make your phone a night owl while charging

Daydream not good enough for you? Android gives you the option prevent your phone or tablet from sleeping while it’s charging. First, you need to unlock Developer options.

How to stay awake for a long period of time

If you check the Stay Awake box in Developer options, the screen will never turn off while its charging unless you press the power button.

Once you have enabled the Developer options, check the Stay awake box to keep your phone from sleeping while you have it plugged in. Of course, pressing the power button will still turn the screen off, just in case you want to get some shut eye at night.

Blake has been an Android fan since the G1 days, tinkering with any device he can get his hands on. When he’s not geeking out on Android devices, you’ll likely find him playing video games or watching a laundry list of horror movies.

This page is for healthcare professionals caring for people under isolation with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19. For the general public, see Quarantine and Isolation.

Summary of Recent Changes

As of September 14, 2021

  • Combined guidance on ending isolation and precautions for adults with COVID-19 and ending home isolation webpages.
  • Included evidence for expanding recommendations to include children.
  • Edited to improve readability

Key Points

  • For most children and adults with symptomatic SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, infection, isolation, and precautions can be discontinued 10 days after symptom onset and after resolution of fever for at least 24 hours and improvement of other symptoms.
  • For people who are severely ill (i.e., those requiring hospitalization, intensive care, or ventilation support) or severely immunocompromised, extending the duration of isolation and precautions up to 20 days after symptom onset and after resolution of fever and improvement of other symptoms may be warranted.
  • For people who are infected but asymptomatic (never develop symptoms), isolation and precautions can be discontinued 10 days after the first positive test.
  • Patients who have recovered from COVID-19 can continue to have detectable SARS-CoV-2 RNA in upper respiratory specimens for up to 3 months after illness onset. However, replication-competent virus has not been reliably recovered and infectiousness is unlikely.

To prevent SARS-CoV-2 transmission, see CDC’s recommended prevention strategies. For people who might be exposed, see CDC’s Quarantine and Isolation webpage and CDC’s Test for Current Infection webpage which provides details on when to get testing for COVID-19.

Recommendations for Ending Isolation

For most people with a current laboratory-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection, isolation and precautions can be discontinued 10 days after symptom onset and after resolution of fever for at least 24 hours, without the use of fever-reducing medications, and with improvement of other symptoms.

For people who are severely ill or severely immunocompromised:

  • A test-based strategy can be considered in consultation with infectious disease experts.
  • Some people with severe illness (e.g., requiring hospitalization, intensive care, or ventilation support) may produce replication-competent virus beyond 10 days that may warrant extending the duration of isolation and precautions for up to 20 days after symptom onset.
  • Severely immunocompromised patients* may produce replication-competent virus beyond 20 days and require additional testing and consultation with infectious disease specialist to determine the appropriate duration of isolation and precautions.

For people who are asymptomatic (never develop symptoms):

  • Isolation and precautions can be discontinued 10 days after the first positive viral test.

* For the purposes of this guidance, moderate to severely immunocompromising conditions include, but might not be limited to, those defined in the interim clinical considerations for people with moderate to severe immunocompromise due to a medical condition or receipt of immunosuppressive medications or treatments.

Other factors, such as end-stage renal disease, likely pose a lower degree of immunocompromise and there might not be a need to follow the recommendations for those with moderate to severe immunocompromise. Ultimately, the degree of immunocompromise for the patient is determined by the treating provider, and preventive actions should be tailored to each patient and situation.

Assessment for Duration of Isolation

Available data suggest that patients with mild-to-moderate COVID-19 remain infectious no longer than 10 days after symptom onset.

Most patients with more severe-to-critical illness or those who are severely immunocompromised likely remain infectious no longer than 20 days after symptom onset; however, there have been several reports of severely immunocompromised people shedding replication-competent virus beyond 20 days. (1-5)

Patients who have recovered from COVID-19 can continue to have detectable SARS-CoV-2 RNA in upper respiratory specimens for up to 3 months after illness onset in concentrations considerably lower than during illness; however, replication-competent virus has not been reliably recovered and infectiousness is unlikely. The circumstances that result in persistently detectable SARS-CoV-2 RNA have yet to be determined. Studies have not found evidence that clinically recovered adults with persistence of viral RNA have transmitted SARS-CoV-2 to others. These findings strengthen the justification for relying on a symptom-based rather than test-based strategy for ending isolation of most patients.

How to stay awake for a long period of time

Periods are annoying enough as they are, but it can be worrisome when they’re suddenly really long. A heavier or lengthy period isn’t always cause for alarm, as there are a number of causes for longer periods, and not all of them are harmful. Knowing when to worry and when you’re just experiencing a change in your body can help you relax when it comes to your menstrual cycle.

"A women usually experiences a variation in her cycle due to a hormone flux, which can be attributed to travel, stress, diet, medications, and other changes to her physiological state," fertility specialist Dr. Hal Danzer tells Bustle over email.

Most periods last three to five days, but anywhere two to seven days is common. If your period is always seven days long, you likely don’t have to worry, but if your period suddenly jumps from four to nine, you may want to go get it checked out. "Generally speaking, you should only be concerned if your cycle pattern changes," says Dr. Danzer. "This is usually due to nutrition changes or any change to the woman’s physiological state."

A number of factors can affect the length of your period, and while some indicate other health issues, many are no big deal. Here are seven possible causes of longer periods — and when you need to worry about them.

1. Change In Hormone Levels

The reason you get a period at all is because of hormones, chemicals in your body that send signals for different organs to do different things. Your period comes when your body senses you’re not pregnant, estrogen and progestin levels drop, and prostaglandin levels rise, according to Flo. That tells your uterus to shed the lining it built up for a potential pregnancy.

If your body is changing your hormone levels such that estrogen and progestin levels stay suppressed, that can in turn cause a longer period. "The most common cause of a longer period or change to a woman’s cycle is a hormone variation," says Danzer. "When hormone levels change, the length of the period may also change. This is usually not something to worry about."

If your period isn’t extra uncomfortable, or you’re not bleeding excessively each day, then don’t worry about this change, but see your gynecologist if you have any questions at all.

2. Thyroid Gland Changes

Your thyroid is a little gland at the front of your neck that secretes hormones that influence a lot of different processes in your body, according to the Society for Endocrinology, including your period. Thyroid changes can be due to a lack of iodine in your diet, or because of autoimmune disorders like Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.

"A third of women in their late 30s to 40 experience thyroid gland changes, which can cause heavier or longer periods," says Danzer. "This is not something to worry about, but you should visit your gynecologist."

3. Polyps

Polyps are abnormal growths of tissue that can occur in any organ, including the uterus. "When women have polyps in their uterus, they may experience staining before and after their period, which may make them seem longer. They may also experience spotting in between periods," Dr. Danzer says. Polyps are usually benign, but some can be cancerous, so it’s important to get them checked out.

4. Changing Birth Control Method

Certain birth control pills can impact frequency, duration, and flow levels of menstrual periods, according to Everyday Health. Changing your birth control can influence your bleed every month, which is a normal part of adjustment. Wait at least three cycles on your new birth control method for your period to adjust, but if you’re uncomfortable or have any questions, touch base with your OB/GYN.

5. Sexually Transmitted Infections

Unusually long or painful periods or spotting between menstrual periods can be a symptom of an STI, according to American University. This bleeding may appear as one long period, but it could mean you have something like gonorrhea or chlamydia. Gonorrhea can cause bleeding between periods, painful urination, or pelvic pain, according to the Mayo Clinic, while chlamydia can include these symptoms plus unusual vaginal discharge, but also might not show any symptoms at all, according to Planned Parenthood.

Both of these infections are treatable, especially if caught early — talk to your doctor about the best course of treatment for you.

6. Miscarriages

A single, heavy, late period may be due to a miscarriage, says Mayo Clinic, which is a loss of an early pregnancy. Miscarriages occur in up to 20% of people who know they’re pregnant, says the Mayo Clinic, but may be higher among people who do not know they’re pregnant. If the timing is aligned with your regular period, a miscarriage is unlikely, but if there’s a possibility you may have been pregnant, that may be why.

7. Ovarian Cysts

Ovarian cysts are common, and can cause irregularly long menstrual bleeding during your cycle, according to the Center of Menstrual Disorders and Reproductive Choice. However, there’s no reason to panic. Most are benign and they rarely are cancerous, but the larger ones can disrupt your normal flow. They usually disappear on their own, but go see your doctor, who can help assure you that your cyst is benign. If you have more than one cyst, you might have Polycistic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS). It’s an endocrine system disorder that can lead to heavy and irregular periods, according to Mayo Clinic. PCOS can lead to infertility later on, so it’s important to diagnose it early so you can help treat it.

Periods can change all the time, for many different, complex reasons. If your period is suddenly abnormally long, don’t panic. Just see your doctor, who can help find the root of your lengthy menstruation.

This post was originally published on August 8, 2016. It was updated on August 27, 2019.

Try these tips for keeping the sandman at bay when you just have to be awake.

How to stay awake for a long period of time

Staying up late can be tough on the body, but sometimes it's unavoidable. Maybe you’re working late, or you might need to stay up for a one-time event like a family trip or a kid's sleepover or even adjust your sleep schedule to accommodate a new night shift assignment. Either way, there are tricks you can use to successfully become a night owl.

Keep in mind that success is relative when it comes to staying up late. The longer you're up, the more your mind and body will feel the effects of sleep deprivation. "Our bodies are programmed to sleep during the night and be awake and alert during the day," said Christopher Drake, PhD, a sleep researcher at the Henry Ford Sleep Disorders Center and an associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral neurosciences at the Wayne State University School of Medicine in Detroit. "When we try to stay up late and sleep during the day, we are working against our own bodies."

Officer Shane Sevigny can testify to that. During the summer he works the graveyard shift patrol for the Salem Police Department in Salem, Ore., which runs from 10 p.m. to 8 a.m.

"As you get older, it's harder," said Sevigny, 47. "I have a harder time sleeping during the day. My body clock would like to be sleeping at night. I have experience doing it, but going back and forth is the hardest for me, especially if it's for a short time. I just don't feel rested."

6 Ways to Stay Up Late

If you're pulling a single all-nighter or trying to adjust to a night shift, there are some basic ways you can improve your chances of staying up late.

Nap beforehand. Either sleep a little longer each night before your late night or grab an afternoon nap that day. "One can bank sleep," Drake said. "Prior to your all-nighter, get nine hours of sleep a night for a week and bank some sleep."

Keep busy. People who stay busy while they are sleepy tend to rally, pushing sleepiness aside because they are interested in the new task. That's what helps Sevigny get through the night. He's happy that his night shifts start on Friday and Saturday, typically the busiest nights for police officers. "If we stay busy, you don't even notice it until you're done with your shift and you're on your way home," he said.

Use caffeine…the right way. Caffeine is an effective aide for staying up late. However, just chugging one big caffeinated beverage at the start of the shift will not help you through the whole evening. "My recommendation is not to utilize a giant Venti Starbucks but to use small doses equally spaced throughout the night shift," Drake said. "That will help maintain alertness throughout the shift but also avoid people having significant sleep disturbance once they are home and ready for bed."

Nap smart at night. Taking a short half-hour nap during a shift can be effective, but some people will feel sluggish afterward. Drake's solution: Drink an 8-ounce cup of coffee, which is about 75 milligrams of caffeine, before your nap. "Taking a small cup of coffee right before one takes that short nap will eliminate the sleep inertia effect," he said.

Stay in bright light. Light has a powerful effect on your internal clock, and bright light can temporarily fake the body into thinking it's not yet time for bed. "That circadian clock has connections to the eye, and bright light can reset our internal clock," said William Kohler, MD, medical director of the Florida Sleep Institute in Spring Hill, Fla. "That clock is what tells us when we're alert and when we're tired." Stay in extremely well-lit rooms or intermittently use a light box that produces between 2,000 and 10,000 lux.

Prepare for 4 a.m. to 5 a.m. Banking sleep will get you only so far through the night, however. "You can't escape the negative effects of the circadian clock," Drake said. "One is going to be sleepy around 4 a.m. to 5 a.m. because that is the sleepiest time of the day." Be prepared to feel extremely sleepy in the hours just before dawn and use all possible countermeasures to help you stay awake.

Adjusting Your Schedule

Switching to a regular night shift schedule takes more effort. You have to work hard to fool your mind and body, and even then you must expect that it won't be completely successful. Sleeping during the day is fundamentally different from night sleep.

Keeping that in mind, people who need to work night shifts should try these strategies:

Establish a fake day-night cycle. A 2013 study in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine found that night shift nurses were best able to adjust to the schedule if they exposed themselves to extremely bright light during the beginning of their shift and then wore dark glasses after the shift. You can extend this effect by using a sleep mask and earplugs once you're in bed.

Don't try to sleep all at once. Many people make the mistake of trying to replicate night sleep during the day. "Most night shift workers will go to sleep within 10 or 15 minutes, but after four hours, their sleep becomes fragmented," Drake said. "They fall asleep and wake up and fall asleep and wake up. It's probably better to use two sleep periods that last three or four hours. Don't try to stay in bed. Get up and do what you need to do. Run errands. After three or four hours of wakefulness, take another three- or four-hour nap before going back to work."

Avoid alcohol. The idea of a nightcap doesn't work during the day (nor does it work at night). Alcohol may help you fall asleep, but it can cause disturbances that ruin the quality of your sleep.

Many of us don’t keep magazines loaded for very long, since we’re going to the range and shooting on a regular basis. Sometimes, though, we’ll store fully loaded magazines in a safe or other areas in the house.

The question on many people’s mind; Will the spring of the magazine weaken over time if I keep the magazine loaded?

The answer may surprise you.

What Weakens, And Doesn’t Weaken, A Magazine Spring

Modern magazine springs are manufactured to maintain their function under stress. In other words, they’re meant to be fully compressed when the magazine is fully loaded. If you were to load a brand new magazine to it’s capacity and let it sit in that condition for years, it should be absolutely fine.

If course, there are outside elements that could play into the longevity of the spring. Corrosion, debris, moisture to name a few. With these factors, the lifespan and/or intended function of a spring is always up in the air. But if kept away from these elements, it’s function shouldn’t change all that much.

On the other hand, loading and unloading a magazine will degrade the spring’s usefulness over time. There is no real rule of thumb when it comes to this, so it’s always best to maintain good practices with your magazine springs just as you would your firearm.

A modern magazine should be able to handle tens of thousands of cycles, but with anything, your mileage may vary.

In reality, any sufficient movement of a spring will weaken it to a certain degree. This is unavoidable, and it’s why we should be checking it’s function to ensure that it’s working to our standards and expectations.

Maintenance Is Always Key

Discussing this along side concealed carry, your magazine spring is part of your equipment. Do you regularly make sure that your firearm is functioning properly? How about your holster? If you answer yes to these questions, you’re doing it right. The same should hold true for your magazines and their springs.

Let’s say you have two magazines for your concealed carry firearm. If you bring one of those magazines to the range on a regular basis, but not the other, it may be time to add both magazines into the mix. Some will carry a spare and simply leave it loaded all the time, without cycling rounds through it at the range. Not only does this hinder the ability to make sure that the spring is functioning properly, but it also hinders your ability to make sure that the magazine as a whole is working properly with your firearm.

I have had a few occasions where a certain magazine didn’t want to work with certain ammo in a gun. Had that been a spare magazine that I actually needed to use in a self-defense situation, I’d have some hefty problems.


If you keep loaded magazines in your safe, you should be good to go. If you keep unloaded magazines in your safe, you should be good to go. Just remember to cycle through different magazines that you plan to use for self-defense, simply to be sure that everything is working as it should. You don’t want to be caught with a severely weakened spring, or a broken one, should you have to use those bullets.

To answer the initial question; Will Your Magazine Spring Weaken If Kept Loaded For Long Periods Of Time?

Probably not substantially.

The full takeaway; If the magazine in question is one that could ever be used in a self-defense situation, it’s best to keep that magazine in a regular rotation to ensure that it’s still functioning properly.