Many of us take our sleep for granted these days. It may sound counter-intuitive, but sleep is a busy time for your body as it is constantly engaged in various processes of healing and repair.
But the effects of not sleeping well go much deeper and affect your overall health, safety and longevity.
Causes of Sleep Deprivation
Sleep deprivation can be caused by poor sleep hygiene, lifestyle choices, long work hours and few medical conditions. This can happen when you voluntarily shorten sleep hours by indulging in various activities. There are a few conditions like insomnia, sleep apnea, breathing problems, stress, anxiety and other psychological issues that can disrupt your sleep.
What happens to your body if you don’t get enough sleep?
Lack of sleep can directly affect how you feel the next day and affect your overall productivity and mood. You may notice these symptoms of sleep deprivation –
- Thinking slower than usual
- Decreased alertness, concentration and attention to details
- Poor memory
- Reduced decision-making capabilities
- Lethargy or low energy level
- Changes in your mood, feeling of irritability, stress or anxiety
Don’t ignore your sleep if you’re a working professional
Lack of sleep negatively affects the job performance, work quality, productivity and relationships of any working individual. If you’re a working professional, you must have observed the effects of sleep deprivation on your productivity by the next day. There may be problems concentrating, slower learning, problems communicating, memory loss and a decrease in problem solving ability.
It also affects an employee’s interpersonal relationships. Sleep-deprived professionals are moodier and less adaptable to the views of others. It is also one of the biggest causes of industrial and traffic accidents. Sleepy workers are 70% more likely to be involved in work accidents, according to a study.
How does sleep affect your mental health?
There are many psychological effects of sleep deprivation. Sleep is necessary for the optimal functioning of the central nervous system. When you sleep, pathways form between nerve cells (neurons) in your brain that help you remember new information you’ve learned. So when you sleep less, your brain may feel exhausted and there is reduced concentration and alertness. It can also affect your decision-making ability along with your creativity. The long-term effects of sleep deprivation are:
- Hallucination – seeing or hearing things that aren’t there
- impulsive behavior
- The tendency to have suicidal thoughts
- You become prone to bipolar disorder
How does lack of sleep affect your safety?
Sleep deprivation can make people feel sleepy during the day, which can increase the risk of accidents and fatalities.
Many studies have shown that sleep loss and poor quality sleep
increases the risk of accidents and injuries at work. First, lack of sleep can impair a person’s attention, alertness, concentration, reasoning and problem-solving abilities.
Second, your sleep plays a key role in separating the memories in the brain good night It is important that you remember the things you learned and experienced during the day.
How important is sleep to your lifespan?
Speaking of the effects of sleep deprivation on life expectancy, here’s a research finding. It says that-
“Sleeping less than 7 hours a night can have negative effects on immunity, cardiovascular, endocrine and nervous systems. Sleep-deprived people are prone to health problems such as obesity, diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, stress, anxiety, depression, stroke, alcohol abuse and some cancers.”
In addition, such people have a higher mortality rate, which is about 24%.
So you may see an immediate effect of sleep deprivation on your health, but the long-term effects are truly terrifying. A person’s overall health and well-being decline drastically over time. Sleep is one of the most important pillars of a healthy body and mind and cannot be neglected as the footprints are relevant to your longevity or life expectancy.
Improve your sleep naturally with these tips
Below are a few tips to help you improve your sleep time and quality:
- Get regular sleep
- edule where you sleep and wake up at the same time every day, even on weekends. This is necessary to maintain a healthy circadian rhythm of the body.
- It is also important to calm the mind before bedtime by engaging in relaxing activities such as listening to music, reading a book, or taking a warm water bath.
- Your sleeping environment also plays an important role in the quality and number of hours of sleep. The bedroom should be a sleep-promoting place and should be dark, quiet, comfortable and cool.
- Sleep on a comfortable, back-supporting mattress with comfortable pillows. Make sure these are clean and allergen-free.
- Use your bedroom only for sleeping and avoid other entertainment and work related activities.
- Keep a regular dinner schedule and eat 2-3 hours before bedtime.
- Incorporate a regular exercise regime. Make it a priority to complete your workouts during the day and avoid them at night.
- Avoid caffeinated drinks such as coffee, tea, soda, and chocolate right before bed.
- Avoid smoking and tobacco use in the evening.
- Avoid drinking alcohol near your bedtime. There is a misconception among people that alcohol is a sedative and will help you sleep, but actually alcohol disrupts sleep, causing you to wake up at night and disrupt sleep.
- Use Ayurvedic sleep supplements such as: blissful sleep† Since these are herbs, they contain Vata pacifying herbs that correct the root cause of the sleeping problems, calm the mind and reduce the time it takes to fall asleep. These supplements have no harmful side effects and are 100% non-addictive.
to sum up
Sleep deprivation can have many physical and mental effects on a person’s mind and body. The effects can be both short-term and long-term. These long-term consequences of not sleeping well can also affect your safety and longevity. It’s high time we all need to prioritize our sleep schedule and lead more productive lives. I hope the information and tips are helpful to maintain a healthy and peaceful life.
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