How does hibernation work?

This is a state in which animals undergo a long sleep or slumbering condition with metabolic depression as well as minimal brain activities.

As we all understand that humans are considered as non-hibernating species when compared to those hibernating species such as fat-tailed lemur, black bears and arctic ground squirrels.

The arctic ground squirrels are usually seen in North America or arctic region. These usually have a change in temperature from 37°c to -2.9°c during the hibernation state.

Not only this, the female black bears are multi tasking in this state i.e, they give birth as well as producing milk for the young ones. The black bears also stop urination and defaecation of the body during hibernation.

The flat-tailed lemurs completely groove over the food and store the food in the form of fats in the tail area making it more than double of its body weight. Not only that, after completion of hibernation period the tail restores back into its original state.

Hibernation is a technique used by animals around the world to protect themselves from the harsh winters as it risks their survival chances. So, the animals in order to maintain their life cycle undergo this state and also few changes which are completely impossible for non-hibernating species such as humans.

Various animals undergo this change. But hibernation is not just a mere sleeping process for a long time. Some animals such as lemurs undergo hibernation for a few days or as long as five to six weeks. This period is called torpor and after a period of torpor is finished there is rise i.e, the animal rises and performs functions for 24 hours before getting back into a new torpor like state.

This might be difficult but understanding the mechanism of hibernation and its way helps in the treatment of heart disease such as strokes and also in the treatment of muscle spasms. So in the future, there can be a chance that humans can undergo hibernation too.

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