Are You Getting Enough Sleep?

  • January 1, 2022
  • 2 minutes read

Trying to get by with less than seven hours of shut-eye a night can have serious consequences in the long run. Here are nine symptoms of sleep deprivation to look out for:

1. You Feel Hungry Very Often

When the body lacks rest, it produces more ghrelin, the hormone that increases your appetite, and less leptin, the hormone that makes you feel full. As a result, you crave sweet-tasting and high-fat foods, which lead to the next symptom.

2. You Pile On The Pounds

Along with the increase in food intake, your metabolism slows down when you don’t spend enough time in dreamland – a combination that spells inevitable weight gain.

3. Your Skin Doesn’t Look So Good

When your skin doesn’t get enough time to repair itself, it can look sallow and lacklustre. A lack of sleep also accelerates skin ageing, which is marked by an increase in fine lines, uneven pigmentation, reduced elasticity, and a slackening of the skin.

4. You Fall Sick More Often

While you sleep, your immune system produces cytokines, which fight inflammation, viruses and bacterial infections. This is why sleep deprivation compromises your immune system and your body’s ability to ward off disease-causing organisms.

5. You Have Trouble Making Decisions

A lack of adequate sleep impairs the ability to focus and think clearly, which leads to difficulty in carrying out tasks that require decision-making and problem-solving skills.

6. You Are Clumsier

On top of the brain fog that comes with sleep deprivation, your motor skills and reaction speeds are also impaired. Many studies have shown that a lack of sleep can slow down reaction time and have similar effects on your body as consuming alcohol. Therefore, driving after less than five hours of shut-eye is similar to drink driving.

7. You Become Forgetful

It is during sleep that your brain process information and forms memories. So, if you don’t get enough rest, you can’t recall what you have learnt or experienced as effectively. One study found that college students who have studied through out the night for tests tend to have lower scores than those who get regular sleep.

8. You Nod Off

Most of us have dozed off during long meetings or dull movies, but if you notice you’re nodding off often for no reason, watch out. Known as micro-sleep, this is your body’s way of telling you it needs to rest. Avoid getting behind the wheel or operating machinery if you are sleep-deprived – it can endanger your life.

9. You Feel Moody Or Depressed

There is a link between insufficient sleep, emotional instability and mental health issues. The Great British Sleep Survey found that people who didn’t get enough shut-eye were twice as likely to suffer from low moods than those who did.

A 2015 study published in Sleep Medicine reported that healthy teenagers who missed just one night of sleep showed more severe symptoms of depression, anger, anxiety, confusion and fatigue. In addition to the above symptoms, chronic sleep deprivation has been linked to increased risk of heart disease, heart attack, high blood pressure, stroke, obesity and type 2 diabetes.

So, think twice before you delay your bedtime again!

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