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Residents reminded to rest up

Sleep is an important part of living a healthy lifestyle, but sometimes, we don’t get enough of it. That’s one of the reasons National Sleep Awareness Week was created.

Dr. Jeffrey Evans, 53, said this week has been designated National Sleep Awareness Week by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and the National Sleep Foundation to recognize and promote sleep health.

Evans, a Jackson native who moved to Oxford in 1994, graduated from the University of Mississippi in 1984 and from University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson in 1988. He is board certified in sleep medicine, pulmonary disease and internal medicine.

“Sleep is a fundamental need of humans,” Evans said. “It is important for resetting of both physical functions and brain function.

“Lack of sleep or poor quality sleep can lead to poor memory, poor job performance, irritability, depression, poor concentration and even impotence, not to mention drowsiness, fatigue and increased chance of motor vehicle crashes due to drowsy driving.”

Evans said a person needs an average of seven to eight hours of sleep a night. Some people are rested well after five to six hours, and a few others require nine to 10.

Evans said people who are having trouble sleeping should make an appointment with a sleep specialist if they experience persistent insomnia – difficulty getting to sleep or difficulty staying asleep that lasts more than two weeks.

About LaReeca Rucker

LaReeca Rucker is a writer, reporter and adjunct journalism instructor at the University of Mississippi's Meek School of Journalism and New Media.

A veteran journalist with more than 20 years of experience, she spent a decade at the Gannett-owned Clarion-Ledger - Mississippi's largest daily newspaper - covering stories about crime, city government, civil rights, social justice, religion, art, culture and entertainment for the paper's print and web editions. She was also a USA Today contributor.

This year, she received a first place award from the Mississippi Press Association for “Best In-Depth Investigative Reporting.” The story written in 2014 for The Oxford Eagle chronicles the life of a young mother with two sons who have epilepsy, and details how she is patiently hoping legalized cannabis oil experimentation will lead to a cure for their disorder.

Her website is www.lareecarucker.com.

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