In a world where time is fleeting, most people merit those who function on less sleep. However, those who manage to survive aren’t actually fully functional and have chosen a path that can only deteriorate their health. When it comes to the right amount of sleep there are many factors to consider, but 7-9 hours per night is ideal for the average adult.
A well-rested adult should feel energized through the day. If you get tired too often, you might need to start following a routine sleep schedule. Even if sleep loss is minimal, you will find significant changes in your daily mood and energy. Prolonged sleep loss can even be detrimental to your physical and mental health.
While you are asleep, your brain is awake recharging your body preparing you for the activities of the next day. Post this restorative sleep, your body will be able to work, learn and create at a level of your true potential. Without enough of it, you will be vulnerable to the multiple effects of not giving your body the time and space to recuperate from the weight for the previous day.
Depriving oneself of sleep leaves the brain exhausted, hampering it from fulfilling its duties well. Creativity and decision-making skills will be compromised resulting in less productivity and a lack of sound judgments. As you are unable to focus and pay attention to your surroundings, you are easily confused. It can affect the way you interpret daily events as you may not be able to evaluate situations and act on them in the best manner.
Loss of memory:
Sleeplessness can make you a forgetful person affecting your learning and memory. While you are asleep, the brain is awake forming connections that help you process and retain new information that can be recalled in the future. A lack of sleep can affect your long term and short-term memory.
Those who are sleep deprived have an increased emotional response to negative feelings such as anger, frustration, irritability and sadness. These stress-inducing moods can further lead to depression and anxiety. Furthermore, the release of excess cortisol, a stress hormone, makes the skin susceptible to pimples and ageing. This is why you often find a sleep-deprived person with puffy eyes and sallow skin.
Your body requires sleep to fight against viruses and infections that can cause the common cold or flu. Without sufficient sleep, you are more prone to fall sick when you are exposed to these germs. Likewise, your body needs more sleep when recovering from an illness, or else it will slow down the healing process.
Risk of diabetes:
Insufficient sleep lowers the insulin levels released in the body after you eat. Insulin regulates the blood sugar levels and a lack of it results in higher blood sugar levels. More glucose remains in the bloodstream which increases the risk of getting type 2 diabetes. Those who have already been diagnosed with diabetes should maintain a healthy sleep routine to avoid any escalations.
Grehlin is a chemical released by your body that makes you hungry and Leptin is the chemical that signals your brain that you are full. When you have not had adequate sleep, your body releases more ghrelin and less leptin making you overeat even when you have had enough. Due to lack of sleep, you will also be too tired to exercise to burn the extra calories you have been gaining.
Sleep isn’t a luxury; it is a necessity that serves so many purposes with so little effort. So make the most out of your bedtime and start following a regular sleep schedule to live up to your body’s potential. A good habit can take you so far and a bad habit can only make you fall short.