Lack of sleep can make you more than just grumpy. Here are some serious effects that sleeping less than 7 to 8 hours a day can have on you.Sleep Deprivation Can Cause:
- Accidents: Sleepiness and drowsiness can slow reaction time as much as driving drunk. Studies show that sleep loss and poor-quality sleep also lead to accidents and injuries on the job.-Difficulties in Learning and Memory: Lack of sleep hurts thinking and learning processes. First, it impairs attention, alertness, concentration, reasoning, and problem solving. Second, during the night, various sleep cycles play a role in “consolidating” memories in the mind. If you don’t get enough sleep, you won’t be able to remember what you learned and experienced during the day.
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-Decreased Sex Drive: Sleep specialists say that sleep-deprived men and women report lower libidos and less interest in sex. Depleted energy, sleepiness, and increased tension may be largely to blame.
- Depression: Over time, lack of sleep and sleep disorders can contribute to the symptoms of depression. The most common sleep disorder, insomnia, has the strongest link to depression. Insomnia and depression feed on each other. On the positive side, treating sleep problems can help depression and its symptoms, and vice versa.
- Aging of Tissues: Chronic sleep loss can lead to fine lines and dark circles under the eyes. When you don’t get enough sleep, your body releases more of the stress hormone cortisol which can break down skin collagen, the protein that keeps skin smooth and elastic. Sleep loss also causes the body to release too little human growth hormone. When we’re young, human growth hormone promotes growth. As we age, it plays a role in tissue repair.
- Weight Gain: Lack of sleep increases hunger and appetite. It stimulates cravings for high-fat, high-carbohydrate foods, leading to obesity. Sleep stimulates peptides that regulate and suppresses appetite.