harmful effects of sleep deprivation
You may have noticed if you are suffering from anxiety, that you have difficulty with sleep. This can be somewhat of a vicious circle because research shows that sleep deprivation causes anxiety.
If you are suffering from chronic insomnia your risk of anxiety disorder goes up dramatically. Anxiety and sleep deprivation seems to be bed friends
A cause of sleep deprivation and anxiety could be stress and or anxiety.
This problem, if it is causing you to have difficulty sleeping, is called Insomnia.
Maybe you are sleeping but waking frequently or too early in the morning,
or awakening to feel as if you haven’t slept.
If you are having one of the above problems are all of the above issues, it may be useful to visit a health professional.
You can also try some of the below exercises which may help you to get a good night’s sleep.
One method exercise o help you sleep is to tense and un-tense muscles in the body to calm and relax the body.
Physical exercise is known to significantly improves the sleep of some people with chronic Insomnia.
Aerobic exercise (e.g., brisk walking) reduced the time it takes to fall asleep.
Exercise increased the length of sleep of people with chronic Insomnia.
If you have no medical issue causing sleep deprivation, make sure you are comfortable,
relaxed start to notice the sensations in your body till you fall asleep.
Start to notice your breathing. This exercise can calm you down and cause you to sleep comfortably.
Anxiety and sleep deprivation symptoms
You may be feeling dull and lazy around the house/office.
Finding yourself yawning uncontrollably and your eyes look droopy. You have mood swings, easily irritated and or at times feeling depressed. With a fuzzy head, it is very difficult to concentrate, let alone learning new concepts or ideas.
In the long run, the symptom of not getting proper sleep could lead to obesity, as it provokes late-night cravings for people.
It is very likely that just because of sleep deprivation you have an unpleasant night and then the next morning you bear the consequences of not being able to sleep.
deprivation symptoms of sleep
It might feel unfair and unjustified to be suffering from sleep deprivation. Let’s look at what are the causes and symptoms of lack of sleep and how can we overcome it.
Read on we will get to some of the main cause and symptoms as we go.
Can sleep deprivation cause depression and anxiety
Can sleep deprivation cause depression and anxiety? There is no clear proof that sleep deprivation causes depression. It is likely that sleep deprivation causes sleep deprivation depression and anxiety.
Studies done with neuroimaging and neurochemistry leans towards having a good night’s sleep contributing to mental health.
Sleep deprivation on the other is more likely to lead to negative mental thinking which may cause emotional vulnerability.
Effects of Sleep Deprivation
Sleep deprivation also known as insomnia is a condition in which a person is unable to fall asleep. This problem is very common in today’s modern society, affecting people at an uncertain point in their lives.
In sleep deprivation, a person gets very few hours of sleep to be able to stay active and alert. It varies from person to person how many hours of sleep they can be considered to be sleep-deprived
Does sleep deprivation cause shortness of breath
Effect of sleep deprivation breath does sleep deprivation cause shortness of breath research don showed that over the period of 2 consecutive nights can cause impaired breathing control.
If you are noticing shortness of breath it could be due to lag of good quality rest.
There is no doubt that sleep is very important to restore the energy level and to fully chargeback the body for the next day, therefore, it is very important to manage your routine accordingly to prevent loss of sleep.
Exercise and sleep
Body temperature increase can be triggered by exercise if your temperature drop that can encourage falling asleep.
It has been suggested that exercise can reduce sleeplessness with degrees in arousal depressive and anxiety symptoms.
exercise can reduce insomnia because of its effects on circadian rhythms (body clock).
Research shows that exercise significantly improves the sleep of people with chronic insomnia.
The one study don which looked at the effects of a single exercise session discovered that moderate-intensity aerobic exercise (e.g., brisk walking) reduced the time it took to fall asleep.
This also increased the length of sleep of people with chronic insomnia compared to the previous nights in which they did not exercise.
But the same study showed that vigorous aerobic exercise (e.g., running) or lifting weights did not improve sleep. Similar results have been found for studies that examined the effects of long-term exercise on sleep in adults with insomnia. In these studies, after 4 to 24 weeks of exercise, adults with insomnia fell asleep more quickly, slept slightly longer, and had better sleep quality than before they began exercising.
The main cause of sleep deprivation is a lack of sleep amongst the people. Sleep deprivation occurs when someone does not get a healthy amount of sleep.
The main cause of sleep deprivation, one cause is aging as people get older they tend to take more medication which affects sleep, often causing sleep difficulties. young adults and children who are very vulnerable for various reasons some adults do not realize the importance of sleep. illness such as a cold can cause a lack of sleep leading to sleep deprivation which can lead to, low level of performance on the job and the might also lead to obesity.
National Sleep foundations(NSF) 2015 has recommended an appropriate amount of sleep hours according to the age groups. They are as follows)
- Older adults (over 65 years): 7 to 8 hours
- Adults (18 to 64 years): 7 to 9 hours
- Teenagers (14 to 17 years): 8 to 10 hours
- School-age children (6 to 13 years): 9 to 11 hours
- Preschoolers (3 to 5 years): 10 to 13 hours
- Toddlers (1 to 2 years): 11 to 14 hours
- Infants (4 to 11 months): 12 to 15 hours
- Newborns (0 to 3 months): 14 to 17 hours each day
There are some people who willingly deprive themselves of sleep as they believe sleep to be a wastage of time and instead use this time on other stuff such as making-money, studying or partying the many activities on can do instead of sleeping.
The habit of intentionally depriving oneself of sleep is usually found in young adults.
The other groups just don’t get enough sleep because of tough and demanding jobs and having to work overtime or fulfilling family duties. Other main causes of sleeplessness might include hormone imbalance, obstructive sleep apnea, and depression.
The long term effects of sleep deprivation are damage to our body system, internally as well as externally. Let’s look at all of the bad effects of sleep deprivation on our bodies in detail.
- Wiley Online Library says that our body’s immune system produces cytokines to fight infections and if we are not giving our body a time to relax, it adversely affects the immune system and thus production of cytokines is also disturbed. This entails that if we get ill, we’ll take a reasonably long time to recover and develop some serious chronic illness.
- Depriving ourselves of sleep could increase the risk of advanced and new diseases in the respiratory system.
- Our sleeping habits are inversely proportional to our body weight. There are two hormones responsible for controlling or hunger and making us fuller that is leptin and ghrelin. They are affected by our sleep pattern therefore it is very important to have a proper sleep.
- Sleep deprivation can cause excess secretion of insulin in our body leading to increased storage of fats in our body. It has a higher risk of Type 2 diabetes involved.
- When we sleep, it is the time our heart vessels heal and rebuild. Therefore, sleep is vital to keep our blood pressure, sugar level and inflammation under control. There have been many cases in which sleep deprivation was the main reason behind cardiovascular disease.
- People who sleep less, are said to have a lower libido than people who have a full hour of sleep and awake fresh. This is usually caused by decreased growth of hormone testosterone in men affectively decreasing their sex-drive. and testosterone in men.
Now let’s move on to look at the general effects our lack of sleep could have on our environment and around us. Medical News Today Knowledge Center article has examined the aftermaths of sleep deprivation in people and what could be done to overcome it. It was said in the article that the ability to focus on environmental issues around us is lost as we are not able to function normally. Also, the more tragic accidents of nuclear power plants, automobiles, trains, ships, and airplanes are implicated to have been caused by sleeplessness.
The best treatment for Sleep deprivation and anxiety is to try to sleep. Now this may sound obvious and you might have heard of this quite a lot of time, but trust me, if you have no medical issue causing sleep deprivation, all you have to do is make yourself easy and relaxed to fall asleep.
The best action plan could be to take a quick hot bath and change into easy clothes. Make sure your sleeping place is cozy enough and does not have any bad odor. Also, the place should be quiet and have no unnecessary lights or sound.
If you can’t help it, try talking to the person making the sound or turning on the lights about your problem. If the problem is still not resolved, earbuds and eye-shield are your best partner.
However, if your sleeplessness is due to some psychological or physical difficulties, you need to get medical advice. Asleep specialist or a therapist should be able to assist you and offer guidance to reach a peaceful state of sleep. For a sleep-deprived person, there are two types of treatments; Behavioral and cognitive measures and medications.
Methods to enhance sleep patterns without any medications according to Mayo Clinic are called Behavioral and cognitive treatment. They are;
- Relaxation techniques: Sleep foundation.org talks about this process in which the patient is made to tense and un-tense muscles in the body in order to calm and relax the body. Guided imagery, breathing exercise, mindfulness training, and meditation techniques can help dozen in this area. There are audio recordings available to make you fall asleep easily at night.
- Stimulation control: this is when your activities before you go to bed are altered to moderate the sleeping routine. Therefore, you will be made to be put in bed early, sending a message to your brain that’s it’s time to sleep so that you feel sleepy.
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT): In this therapy, you will be made to change the pattern of your thinking and certain behaviors. It will challenge your beliefs which might not be healthy in order to promote healthy and positive thoughts. This, in turn, would help develop a healthier sleeping pattern.
Medications Would only be considered as an option when non-cognitive treatments prove to be ineffective. There are over-the-counter as well as made valid with a prescription drug available that can induce sleep. However, medicines always have side effects and some people form a dependency on sleeping pills; that is they cannot sleep at all without taking the medicine. Therefore, it is very important to stay healthy and to avoid taking medicines and relying on non-medicinal measures as much as possible.
What is a Sleep Debt and How Can One Pay It Off?
According to the Harvard Health Publishing Sleep debt is when you don’t take the required amount of sleep. The number of hours that you sleep less is your sleep debt and they can only be paid off by sleeping them off.
Even if there are hundreds and thousands of hours in your sleep debt, you can and should pay them off in order to recover fully.
You would know that your sleep debt has been paid off when you would wake up fresh and won’t feel sleepy or drowsy during the day. You would soon feel the positive impacts of paying the sleep debt off.
If after all this, you are still deprived of sleep and still facing the negative symptoms even after following a good sleep hygiene regime, you should consult with a healthcare provider.
What you have learned
Deprivation of sleep is a very common issue amongst the fast and demanding environment of today’s world. People are more tensed regarding their studies, jobs, and career that it causes stress to their minds effectively reducing their appetite for sleep.
Although there are remedies (both medical and non-medical) to overcome this dilemma, it is still questionable to what extent do these remedies work to make you fall asleep like a baby.
The researched remedies that we have shared above are a good place to start your journey of fighting off sleep deprivation.
You can choose the best remedy that suits your routine. We hope that the article above is helpful for you as we have put in a lot of effort into collecting the facts and figures for the article.
If you think there is something missing in the article, please feel free to tell us in the comments section and if you think we missed something potential, please let us know. We really like to talk to our readers.
Here is a video that might also add to your knowledge about sleep deprivation