Our society has been called a “goldfish” or “microwave society” … We want everything and we want it NOW! Sound familiar?
We value productivity and distraction, just like this site describes … We try to edge out as much time in a day as we can, and since we only have 24 hours in a day it has to come from somewhere! So in order to get that time, our sleep usually suffers for it.
Once in a while, you might be able to not get enough or adequate sleep, but doing it on a regular basis can really do a bad spell on ya.
Have you ever had muddled thoughts? Been upset over something super trivial?
Perhaps thought you saw or heard something that wasn’t really there?
“Sleep Dep” can be a source for domestic unhappiness, career shortcomings, and can even put you in life-threatening situations (research has shown that those who sleep 6-7 hours a night are twice as likely to be involved in a crash as those sleeping 8 hours or more & when sleeping less than 5 hours increased their risk four to five times).
Because I know I have been victim to sleep deprivation, I wanted to give you some signs of it so you are more aware and can take a nap.
When you don’t get enough or adequate sleep, it wears down on your normal capacity to deal with daily aggravations or challenges that you come into contact with. It lowers your “stress perception” threshold … Your routine activities may seem to be impossible tasks.
When you don’t get enough sleep, you can begin to have “senior moments” (which I truly detest this term as it’s agist, so please leave a comment below if you know of another term please) …
REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep aids in the formation and retention of emotional memories.
When you sleep, you are facillitating connections between nerve cells. The less deep sleep, the less connections you form. What I found interesting from this, was that apparentely memory tests showed that both humans and animals suffered from memory loss when deprived of sleep.
Something really interesting I learned while looking in to sleep deprivation was that people not only perform poorly on concentration tests, they also overestimate their performance. What was even more fascinating, and seems like it should be common sense, but the effects of sleep deprivation increase as the sleep debt builds. So even someone who gets only 5 hours a day for a week would perform better than someone who got 4 hours of sleep a night for the same time frame.
That’s why all those sugary, caffeinated drinks have a peak and only last for a short while.
“The longer you’re awake, the longer you have to consume calories.” — Well, duh! What I didn’t know was that a lack of sleep causes you to be more hungry. APPARENTLY the hormones that signal the body that it’s time to eat are increased when you don’t get enough sleep, and you have less of the hormones that tell you that you’re full or satisfied.
Another issue in regards to your “new” eating habits, your body tends to crave more sweets & salty foods, as well as starches. One of the reasons for this is that your brain metabolizes sugar at a slower rate when you’re sleep deprived.
When you are deprived of sleep, you may find yourself fighting through a fuzzy world — and blame it on your contacts.
You may even start to see things at the corners of your vision, or even find it difficult to process peripheral images & those in your direct sight at the same time.
The problems you experience are caused by neurons deprived of regenerative sleep becoming less efficient and trying to cut corners. Just like we all do when we cut back on our sleep.
This is something that can have repercussions much later down the line, even when you’ve “erased” your debt (sleep). Sleep deprivation also affects your prefrontal cortex that is what affects your judgement and impulse control (which could also be part of the reason you eat more).
When your brain doesn’t get the chance to regenerate, refresh & reorganize itself, your decisions suffer. You’re more likely to take risks, be aggressive in the hopes of short term gains, and more likely to be fiscally irresponsible.
This is one of the reasons why I am so adamant about people getting enough sleep.
Research has shown that when you go even a single night without sleep that you essentially are trying to operate your life as if you were legally intoxicated!!! You might have:
- slurred speech
- speak monotonously
- slower reaction time
- fumbling with small objects
Having sleep patterns that are irregular (or lacking completely) can affect your significant other. It throws off schedules, bonding time, and your family’s sleep patterns.
Sleep deprivation can also cause these relationship strainers:
- flagging libido
- poor memory
- chronic snoring
- sleep apnea
Yeah, no fluff here. Just things that affect your health:
- decreate in body’s ability to metabolize sugar
- higher blood pressure
- lower body temperature
- heart rate that can’t quite find it’s rhythm
- lowers defenses of immune system
- decrease in white blood cell count (remaining white blood cells become lethargic)
- your body will forcibly shut itself down to catch up, but you technically do have a potential to die from lack of sleep
Even the littlest thing can set you off … “Cell Block Tango” anyone?
It can also increase feelings of depression, decreased empathy, burnout … or make things worse for those who already have these negative emotions.
So seriously. Stop killing yourself slowly with not sleeping. It’s not good for you and can have some detrimental effects. Both for you and your loved ones.
Take care of yourself!