Dutch researcher Michel Varkevisser has discovered that chronic sleep complaints are associated with a reduced performance. This conclusion contradicts earlier findings. The researcher postulates that under normal daily circumstances, the lower performance level was probably not visible because the sleep sufferers invest extra energy in carrying out a task.
Research psychologist Michel Varkevisser investigated how sleeping problems affected the performances of employees under both laboratory and field conditions. In contrast to earlier findings, Varkevisser found that people who suffer from sleeping problems clearly performed less well when assessed under controlled laboratory conditions. This difference might be because Varkevisser is one of the few to have set up a completely-controlled laboratory experiment. In this set-up, posture, food intake and exposure to light were kept constant. Moreover the study subjects were not allowed to sleep over a 24-hour period.
After the controlled experiment, the researcher carried out a field study in which employees with several sleeping problems received a palmtop computer that contained three tests and a sleep diary. During this observation, the insomniacs reported a lot of subjective complaints such as tiredness, drowsiness, a worse mood and a reduced ability to concentrate. In contrast to the subjective complaints the researcher found no worsening in objective functioning.
Dr Michel Varkevisser | alfa
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