Sleep: A Very Short Introduction

Sleep: A Very Short Introduction - Steven W. Lockley;Russell G. Foster As the title suggests this is a short book (about 130 pages, plus references), but very informative, concise and accessible. The first section describes what we know about the physiology of sleep, the 'C' process (own internal clock) and the 'S' process, which tells us we need sleep and how these two processes interact to give us our sleep-wake cycle.

For sleep itself, we still don't know why we do, though suggestions are made and the need for more direct experimentation and evidence espoused.

The rest of the book describes the sorts of health problems that occur when we do not get the right sort of sleep (and those conditions that are linked to sleeplessness), things that can be done to 'help' and a bit of a polemic against the '24 hour' society and shift work in particular.

Overall a very interesting read and I will be checking out 'Very Short Introductions' more frequently in the future - there is one on just about any subject you choose to look for...