What Are the Effects of Lack of Sleep?
Lack of sleep can have severe effects on your health, so if you are having sleep problems, talk to our dedicated sleep team at Koala® Center For Sleep & TMJ Disorders. We accept new patients. For more information call us today or request an appointment online. We serve patients from all over the USA. Locations in Bloomington IL, Peoria – Dunlap IL, Mishawaka IN, Kansas City MO, El Paso TX, and Wausau WI.
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Lack of sleep is a common problem, affecting many people at some point in their lives. Sleep deprivation can have serious effects on physical and mental health, and even on the ability to learn new information. It is important to learn about the effects of sleep deprivation so that people can take the necessary steps to avoid it, if possible.
People who do not get enough sleep each night have many complications during the day. Their ability to learn and concentrate is often impaired, resulting in a higher occurrence of mistakes, including accidents. Other short-term problems can include:
– Lack of alertness
– Excessive daytime sleepiness
– Impaired memory
– Relationship stress
– Lowered quality of life
– Greater likelihood for car accidents
Lack of sleep has many far-reaching consequences, many of which are still not well understood. One of the most obvious effects of sleep deprivation is fatigue. However, lack of sleep also affects our mood and behavior and has even been shown to impact our performance at work. There are also a number of less obvious consequences of sleep deprivation. Some of the effects of not getting the sleep the body needs include: fatigue, irritability, difficulty concentrating, memory issues, and malaise (a general feeling of discomfort or uneasiness).
Multiple factors can cause or contribute to sleep deprivation including poor sleep hygiene, lifestyle choices, work obligations, sleep disorders, and other medical conditions. Lack of sleep is often driven by voluntary choices that reduce available sleep time, such as staying up watching a TV series or playing video games. Work obligations are another common contributor to sleep deprivation, especially for people who work multiple jobs, extended hours, or shift work. Lack of sleep may be caused by other sleep disorders such as sleep apnea, or mental health problems, such as general anxiety disorder.
Not getting enough sleep can accrue what is known as sleep debt, the amount of sleep needed to return to normal functioning. The amount of sleep needed to recover from lack of sleep is highly dependent upon the amount of total sleep loss, as well as how long the problem has been going on. In many cases, taking a nap or sleeping in once or twice may not be enough to reverse the cumulative effects of short-term sleep loss, so it is important to know what to do in order to expedite the process. It is vital to:
– Know Individual Sleep Needs — Everyone has different sleep needs, and because there is no agreed-upon scientific definition of sleep quality, sleep needs are defined as the amount of sleep required to have sufficient energy throughout the day. For some people, this may only be five to six hours, but for others, it may be more than eight or nine hours.
– Set a Realistic Goal — Unfortunately, modern society is constantly busy with increasingly demanding schedules, which can often affect the amount of sleep we get each night. Setting a realistic goal for sleep is important, and working towards this goal is tantamount to having zero sleep debt.
If you are not getting enough sleep, come to Koala® Centers For Sleep & TMJ Disorders for a professional evaluation. Our dedicated sleep team can help you determine the underlying cause of your sleep problems, so you can focus on getting a good night’s rest. Call us today to book an appointment with our sleep specialist.