Sleep deprivation or insufficient sleeping is a major problem that affects many people all around the world. Modern lifestyle requires many sacrifices in order to get to a good point in life, for example, if you want to climb ranks in your company, you should work extra hours and stay late in the office. This drops the rate of sleeping hours and can cause short and long-term health problems.
Some people do not take this subject seriously, and they will learn the hard way that sleep is a necessary thing because lack of sleep makes changes in the brain and noticeable changes in the body, not to mention the many health issues it causes. So if you are not getting enough sleep, then you are risking to get one or more than one of these 10 things.
1) Slow reaction time
This happens right away and does not take time to show itself. Sleep deprivation makes your reaction time slower, which means, concentration levels drop, focus drops, and doing activities that require concentration and focus become harder than they used to be. This can also affect your abilities as a driver, and if you work in construction sites, then your job will be more difficult than it should be.
2) Memory issues
Sleep deprivation can cause noticeable issues like memory issues. If you don’t get enough sleep, then your thinking abilities get weaker over time and you won’t be able to absorb information, make decisions, and your performance will drop.
3) It weakens your immune system
When you are sleeping, your immune system generates protective substances that can fight against bacteria and viruses. Also, when asleep, your immune system regains energy to fight illnesses. When you don’t get enough hours of sleep, your immune system does not refill its energy, thus, you become vulnerable to illnesses and you will need more time to recover.
4) Higher risk of heart disease
When you get enough hours of sleep, you are actually keeping blood vessels and the heart in healthy shape, in other words, blood sugar and blood pressure levels stay normal. Some studies have shown that insomnia can higher your chances of getting a stroke and heart attacks.
A study conducted in 2007 on 10000 people showed that those with insomnia can develop insomnia 5 times more than people that get a good night sleep. An American poll showed that people with depression sleep less than 6 hours per night. In psychology, insomnia is usually an early sign of depression. Sleep deprivation makes depression symptoms worse, and the depression-insomnia relationship is kind of reciprocal because depression makes it hard for people to sleep, and insomnia makes aggravates the symptoms of depression.
6) It leads to weight gain.
The sleep division in Harvard Medical School found that sleep deprivation increases the production of ghrelin, the hunger hormone, and decreases the fat-regulating hormone, leptin, which leads to an increased appetite and a strong need to eat even though you are not hungry.
7) Higher risk of diabetes.
Did you know that sleep can directly influence the way your body processes glucose? Well, the Harvard Medical School found just that, and a study showed that individuals who slept four hours at night, processed glucose slowly compared to those who slept 12 hours. Other studies found that adults that sleep less than 5 hours per night, increase their chances of developing and eventually getting diabetes.
8) It kills your sex drive.
If you don’t get enough sleeping hours, then you’ll be killing your sex drive because both men and women that don’t sleep well, have less interest in sex probably because of constant sleepiness, energy drain, and low testosterone secretion during night time.
9) It prematurely ages you.
When you are going through an intense training session, your pituitary gland releases a growth hormone, and do you know when that hormone is produced? Well, you might’ve guessed right, when you are asleep. When you don’t get enough hours of sleep, the process starts getting slow and that promotes premature aging. On top of that, your body will start releasing cortisol, a stress hormone, that can break down collagen in the skin and that leads to wrinkles and fine lines.
10) Short lifespan.
As you can see, sleep deprivation can mess up your physical and mental health, but unfortunately, it also kills you because lack of sleep is linked to low lifespans. A lot of major and large studies have shown that sleeping five hours or less every night, increases the mortality rate by 15%.