Sleep deprivation is running rampant in our fast paced society.
Sleep is essential for the body to remain healthy, but what is very interesting is the time you go to bed. Researchers say that each hour of rest before midnight is equivalent to two hours of sleep post midnight. Thus, it is important that your body gets sufficient rest for 6 to eight hours per day. Some people may need seven hours of rest, while some may require eight hours of rest. This is an individual requirement and you will know what your body needs the best.
Many people do not realize the serious implications of sleep deprivation.A study was conducted on rats to study the effects of insufficient rest. They were barred from sleeping and most of the rats died in ten days. Sleep deprivation slows down your body and can even cause hallucinations. A slowed system is the first sign of age and thus, people who have suffered from a chronic condition of sleeplessness for long tend to age quicker than those who get plenty of sleep.
Research indicates that a person who is 20% sleep-deprived has the mental perspicacity of a person who is legally intoxicated! According to ongoing studies, a typical American does not get enough rest.
Lack of sleep could have many harmful effects on your body. Sleep deprivation will affect your learning and memory power. Sleep helps the brain grasp new information and commit it to memory following a process called memory consolidation. Lack of sleep interrupts this process thus weakening the memory. A weak memory is a typical sign of a person getting old.
Unceasing sleep deficiency may result in weight gain by affecting the way our bodies process and accumulate carbohydrates. In worst cases, it may even alter the levels of hormones thus changing our appetite. Sleep deprivation contributes to a greater predisposition of falling asleep during the daytime. These lapses may result in falls and mishaps and other accidents, like medical errors, etc.
An insufficient amount of sleep may result in mood swings characterized by impatience, irritability, inability to concentrate, and moodiness. Cardiovascular health is seriously affected by a lack of sufficient rest. Hypertension and increased levels of stress are a fall out of chronic sleep loss. Sleep deprivation may result in weakening of the immune system. This changes the body’s ability to fight disease. It is an accepted fact that one can keep healthier and be more resistant to cancer by resting well at night.
Building new habits takes time – much more than the “accepted” 21 days. What is important is your desire and mindset to change the way you are sleeping. Set a goal to get 7 or 8 hours of sleep at night. This may mean cutting out the 10:00 pm or later newscasts or your favorite program. Just think of the way you will feel – in only a short time. And when you think of the numerous health benefits, and regaining your mental acuity and memory by tackling sleep deprivation – what are you waiting for?