We all know how bad it feels like when we don’t get enough sleep. We may feel tired the next day, tend to snap at people, or have trouble focusing. However, there could be more dire consequences to lack of sleep than that.
In fact, if you are not getting enough sleep regularly, you are putting yourself at risk for dire health consequences. These health issues can include obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and more.
What Happens If I Don’t Sleep?
There are many different systems in the body that are negatively impacted by lack of sleep. Below, we will discuss how not getting enough sleep affects these systems.
Central Nervous System
New neurons are built while you sleep. These neurons help you remember new information. When you aren’t getting enough sleep, you will find that you will have difficulty learning new things and staying focused.
Your central nervous system is also in charge of quick reactions. When you don’t get enough sleep, you will be more prone to accidents as these neurons will not fire as quickly as they would with adequate sleep.
Your body develops its antibodies and restores itself while you are sleeping. If you aren’t getting enough sleep, it won’t be able to ward off viruses and bacteria nearly as well, making you more prone to illness.
You are more likely to develop respiratory illnesses such as the common cold, flu, and chronic lung disease when your immune system is compromised due to lack of sleep.
The hormones that regulate your digestive system are interrupted due to lack of sleep. This can cause digestive issues and weight gain.
Lack of sleep gives your body less time to repair things like blood vessels. Over time, this can lead to an increased risk of heart attack and stroke.
Hormones of all kinds are affected during sleep. In adolescents, this can affect growth hormone and stunt their growth. In adults, this can affect sex hormones and cause issues such as lack of sex drive or early menopause.
What Happens If I Do Sleep?
When you get the right amount of sleep, good things happen to your body. Here are just a few of them.
Boost In Immunity
Good sleep helps your body develop the antibodies it needs to fight disease.
Letting your body repair its muscles as well as regulating hormones helps you lose weight in addition to healthy eating and exercise.
Increased Sex Drive
When your sex hormones are in balance, you may experience increased libido.
When reproductive hormones are in check, it is easier for both men and women to successfully procreate.
Mental Clarity And Balance
When you are able to think clearly, you will have better mental well-being. Getting enough sleep will help ward off depression and anxiety.
How Much Sleep Do I Need?
This will vary for every person, but 8 hours is the average. It is not recommended to get less than six hours every night.
In order to get more sleep, you need to set up a healthy sleep environment. Getting a mattress that has the right feature for you is one of the most important factors that you might not notice. Turn off screens an hour before bedtime. Create a bedtime ritual. Don’t eat or exercise at least two hours before bedtime. Limit excess light. Turn on a white noise machine. Invest in a comfortable mattress and sheets. These steps will help you get better sleep right away.