If you, or someone you know, suffers from a lack of a proper night’s sleep, you’ll know or have observed some of the effects this can cause. These may be extensive, and impact your quality of life more than you might have imagined. Let’s look at a range of possible outcomes for those suffering from sleep deprivation.
Behavior, Memory and Concentration
Together, these can be referred to as ‘mind issues’. Starting with mood, sleep deprivation can lead to a swift loss of temper, and to an individual being increasingly emotional and subject to mood swings. This can then lead to anxiety and further to a deepening state of depression.
As you sleep, your brain takes the opportunity to form the vital connections which help you firstly process, and then remember, key pieces of information. Sleep deprivation can impact on both your short and long term memory.
The problems associated with not enjoying adequate rest can see an increase in the difficulties of performing key work and life skills, such as those involving either creativity or concentration. The condition can also result in a reduction in problem-solving abilities.
Impairing A Range Of Bodily Functions
Moving from the mind to the body in general, sleep deprivation can lead to a range of conditions, all harmful in some way to your general health. For example, if you get less than around five hours of sleep each night, then this has been shown to increase the risk of suffering from high blood pressure. Furthermore, it can also lead to a higher level of chemicals which are linked to inflammation – and on to possible heart disease itself.
Type 2 diabetes is becoming an increasing problem in many countries around the globe. A lack of the requisite amount of sleep can lead to higher levels of blood sugar in the system and impair the body’s ability to release vital insulin. Another possibility, linked to this condition, is that there is a loss of adequate chemical signals from the brain to the body to indicate that enough food has been consumed. The result is eating too much, often to the point of serious overindulgence.
It’s also worth noting that individuals who suffer from sleep deprivation can also suffer from both coordination and balance problems. This means that you could be increasingly likely to suffer troublesome stumbles, falls or other physical accidents.
Being deprived of enough sleep can also impair a body’s vital immune system defenses. This can increase the risk of catching a cold or the flu.
Finally, a lack of sleep can also have an impact on an individual’s sex drive. They may suffer from lower libido, and men might see a decrease in their testosterone levels.
Famous composer John Cage once said that ‘Sleep’s what we need. It produces an emptiness in us into which sooner or later energies flow’. If sleep deprivation and its effects are impacting your quality of life, contact our team today.