9 Damaging Effects Sleep Deprivation Has on Your Health
Sleep deprivation is a common problem for today’s working people. If you are a working adult who juggles various roles in your life, you may admit suffering from a lack of quality sleep lately.
As a functional adult, you will generally find yourself preoccupied with your career. At home, your work does not stop. It is because you need to attend to your family’s needs for your time, attention, and affection.
Meanwhile, if you are a single person, you may find yourself engrossed in your job and leisure pursuits. All of these engagements of today’s adults like you may contribute to experiencing sleep insufficiency.
What is sleep deprivation? How does it impact your life as a contemporary adult?
Basic Definition of Sleep Inadequacy
Australian medical and wellness website Better Health Channel gave the meaning of sleep deprivation. The health experts who write for the portal defined this condition as a state a person reaches when he gets inadequate quality or quantity of sleep.
This human experience consists of circadian rhythm sleep illnesses and involuntary or voluntary sleeplessness. Sleep is, indeed, essential to the human body. Similar to water and food, you should obtain enough of this kind of brain rest.
Otherwise, you will, indeed, experience sicknesses. Disruptions to the sleep-wake cycle have repercussions on how you function during the daytime, equally as sleep inadequacy.
Examples of these troubles are situations involving yourself travelling to a different time zone and shift work. Therefore, if you find yourself deprived of healthy sleep, people at the office will see you yawning frequently, and notice that you are excessively sleepy.
Moreover, they might recognize that you are unnecessarily cranky. Finally, you will find yourself very tired during the middle of the workday.
As you can see, these negative consequences of sleep inadequacy are detrimental to your daily performance in your workplace.
The worst thing that could happen next is your direct supervisor noticing your problematic performance, leading him to prevent you from getting a promotion.
9 Ways of How Sleep Inadequacy Harms Your Health
As a modern adult living in demanding contemporary times, you may occasionally find yourself suffering from sleep deprivation.
This problematic experience, indeed, causes massive amounts of inconvenience to your life. Human well-being and health website WebMD discussed these hazards:
1. You become unable to make reasonable judgments
Sleep expert Phil Gehrman cited that people who obtain less than seven to eight hours of sleep affirm that they have gotten accustomed to the situation over time. However, he pointed out that these sleep-deprived individuals perform poorly on tests that gauge their mental performance and alertness.
When you lack sleep, your capability to make sound judgments becomes impaired. You will find yourself unable to evaluate scenarios accurately and respond to them intelligently.
Plus, you may find yourself unable to recognize that your sleep inadequacy dilemma is taking a toll on your overall well-being. People near and dear to you may find you unreasonable.
It is because they might encounter you defending the idea that working even when a person lacks sleep is a badge of honor in today’s fast-paced world.
2. Lack of sleep makes you vulnerable to weight gain
One study conducted in 2004 found out that obesity is a problem for individuals who do not sleep for more than six hours a day. The researchers discovered that these people were nearly 30 percent more likely to suffer from extreme fatness.
On the other hand, they found out that healthy individuals got quality sleeping hours lasting from seven to nine hours. Moreover, one study conducted in recent years focused on the connection between the peptides which regulate human appetite and sleep.
Among these peptides are leptin and ghrelin. The former signals satiety to the human brain and prevents appetite. Meanwhile, the latter pertains to a hormone that the stomach mainly produces and releases, and it stimulates hunger in the human body.
Researchers link surges in ghrelin and reduction in leptin with truncated sleep time. Furthermore, their study indicated that sleep deprivation makes a person want to eat a lot.
This wellness concern facilitates a person’s cravings for unhealthy foods as well, specifically those rich in fats and carbohydrates, thus, resulting in weight gain.
A person trying to lose weight can also consider taking a good weight loss supplement like Ultra Omega Burn.
3. Your partner will complain due to your decreased interest in sex
Did you know that sleep inadequacy diminishes your libido or sexual desire, making you less interested in having satisfying and vigorous sexual intercourse?
This situation is a problem, not only for you but also for your intimate partner in life. It is because you would typically have low energy levels.
Plus, you would feel that you need to sleep right away, which your partner may find insensitive and disregarding his or her need for intimate moments.
4. Sleep insufficiency makes you prone to serious health concerns
Diabetes, hypertension, or abnormally elevated blood pressure, and stroke are severe wellness dilemmas that you certainly do not want to have. But if you fail to address your problem of sleep deprivation, you may one day wake up and find out that you have one of these critical ailments.
Moreover, sleep inadequacy puts your heart in danger because your body is failing you in keeping heart disease, including irregular heartbeat and heart failure, at bay.
Above all, you should, indeed, alter your unhealthy lifestyle because sleep insufficiency makes you vulnerable to experiencing a deadly cardiac arrest.
5. You will experience constant low moods often if you lack sleep
Shortage of sleep and sleep disorders are among the factors that contribute to depression over time.
In 2005, a Sleep in America survey indicated that patients whose doctors gave them the depression and anxiety diagnosis tend to slumber less than six hours during nighttime. Furthermore, the most common sleep illness, insomnia, reportedly has the most formidable connection to persistent low moods.
One study conducted in 2007 involved 10,000 research participants.
The researchers discovered that the insomniac people were fivefold as possible to grapple from depression as compared to the individuals who did not have sleeping troubles.
They also found out that insomnia is often one of the first symptoms that depression entails. Plus, sleep insufficiency frequently aggravates these signs of endless low moods.
6. It is highly likely that you will get into a vehicular accident
As an adult, you travel to work daily, most likely by using your car. If you do not get regular healthy sleep, you become a public safety hazard on the highway.
It is because your drowsiness can decelerate your reaction time, similar to when you drive when you are inebriated.
In the United States, tiredness results in 1,550 vehicular crash-related deaths and 100,000 car accidents in one year, as per the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s approximations.
If you are a young driver whose age is between 18 to 25 years old, you should keep in mind that this is the most significant problem among the individuals within your age bracket. Moreover, studies present that sleep insufficiency and inferior sleep quality lead to workplace accidents and injuries.
In one research project, employees reportedly complained about excessive sleepiness during the workday. These workers had substantially more sick days per accident and more repeated workplace mishaps.
7. You will find your skin getting rough and old quickly
As an adult at the prime of your life, you surely want to look your best as you age. However, if you are dealing with sleep deprivation, you may find it challenging to achieve this aim.
It is because your health concern makes your body secrete limited amounts of human growth hormone. The latter promotes development in young people. Plus, the human growth hormone thickens your skin, boosts the muscle mass in your physique, and makes your bones robust.
Gehrman cited that the body releases the human growth hormones when a person is deep asleep or in the state of slow-wave slumber. He pointed out that these hormones are parts of standard tissue repair which patch the wear and tear that daytime delivers to the human body.
Also, a few nights of missed slumber transforms your skin into a sallow one. You will find yourself complaining because your eyes become puffy as well.
Chronic sleep inadequacy adds to your unpleasant looks because of your lackluster skin, and the dark circles and fine lines under your two eyes. Thorough research will make you understand that sleep insufficiency makes your body secrete more cortisol.
In excessive quantities, this stress hormone breaks down skin collagen, which is the protein that ensures that your skin is silky and elastic.
8. Sleep inadequacy upsets essential cognitive processes
Did you find yourself having problems lately when it comes to using your skills in problem-resolution, focusing, and reasoning? Moreover, did you notice that you do not get to use your alertness and attention faculties well?
Among the reason for these concerns that involve your brain’s cognitive processes is because you did not obtain a good night’s sleep in one of the evenings recently.
With these negative experiences, you may find it challenging to learn new concepts efficiently. Also, during the evening, different sleep cycles place a crucial role in integrating the memories in your mind.
If you have been suffering from sleep inadequacy, it is highly likely that you would forget all the things you underwent and learned in the morning.
9. Your chances of experiencing an untimely death increases
Researchers from the United Kingdom conducted the “Whitehall II Study.” In this undertaking, they evaluated how sleep patterns impacted the mortality of over 10,000 British civil servants over 20 years. The researchers published the results of their study in 2007.
They found out that the research subjects who slashed their sleeping time from seven to five hours almost doubled their risk of dying from all causes.
This finding also applies when the civil servants had fewer sleeping moments at night. Dearth in sleep specifically doubled the peril of passing away because of cardiovascular ailment.
As you can see, getting a good night’s sleep every night is crucial to your attainment of a healthy body. Otherwise, you will suffer from poor-quality living, which you certainly do not wish to experience.
Getting a Good Night’s Sleep Regularly: the Path to Wellness
As you can see, sleep inadequacy negatively affects your overall wellness significantly. But you certainly should not worry. If you consult your physician, he can provide you some advice on how to obtain healthy sleep nightly.
Among these tips include limiting your siestas, refraining from drinking coffee after lunch, exercising regularly, and performing relaxing activities.
These pursuits can include reading one hour before sleeping, doing meditation, and taking a warm shower.
However, if you believe that you are suffering from the severe health effects of chronic sleep insufficiency, these recommended activities may not work for you.
Therefore, your doctor may perform a test. He will determine the main wellness problems that possibly cause your sleep deprivation and offer you suitable medical remedies.