Not Getting Enough Sleep

Sleep and the Effects of not Getting Enough-

Today we look at the effects not getting enough sleep.  While there are definite benefits to being well rested, there are also definite side effects to NOT sleeping enough, especially if insomnia becomes a chronic condition.  We all experience bouts of insomnia, stress, distraction, staying out late and all night studying.  But when not getting enough sleep becomes a way of life, we risk serious health hazards.

Chronic sleep deprivation may harm your health-

Chronic sleep deprivation significantly affects your health, work performance, safety and pocketbook.  There are many reasons for insomnia: Daily life stress, trading rest for more work, medical and mental health reasons and most importantly- unrecognized sleep disorders.

Short Term Consequences of sleep deprivation:

Insufficient Sleep Can Lead to Poor Work Performance

1)     Decreased performance and alertness: Lack of sleep causes significant reductions in general performance and alertness.  By reducing nighttime sleep just ½ hour, your daytime alertness can drop as much as a third.

2)     Memory and Cognitive Impairment: Decreased alertness and excessive daytime sleepiness impairs your memory and cognitive ability- your ability to think and process information.

3)     Relationship Stress: Disruption of a bed partners rest due to a sleep disorder may cause significant relationship problems (separate room, conflicts, moodiness, etc)

4)     Poor Quality of Life: You may no longer be able to participate in the things you enjoy, or that require sustained attention.

5)     Occupational Injury: Daily fatigue from lack of sleep can increase the risk of a job injury by as much as 2 times.

6)     Automobile injury: The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that each year drowsy driving is responsible for at least 100,000 automobile crashes, 71,000 injuries and 1,550 fatalities.

Long Term Consequences:

Sleeping disorders and chronic sleeping problems can lead to serious long term health issues including-

  • High Blood Pressure and Stroke
  • Heart attacks and heart failure
  • Obesity
  • Psychiatric problems, depression and mood disorders
  • Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)
  • Mental Impairment
  • Fetal and Childhood growth retardation

To learn more about these medical issues, check out WebMD

A study found insufficient sleep time is a greater mortality risk than smoking, high blood pressure and heart disease!

Clearly it is vitally important for our own well being to be well rested.  Next week we look at impairments to sleeping well and some ways you can help increase your chance for a great nights sleep.

Sweet Dreams!


Until then, Sweet Dreams!