Sleep is the most effective way to reset our brain and body health each day. It is also one of the best ways to enhance brainpower, focus, and energy levels. But rest can only do all of that if you sleep long enough and sleep well. If you don’t, not only will you not achieve peak performance, but your health may also suffer.
What Are Sleep Disorders?
In our lifetimes, we have all gone through sleepless nights, which happen due to various causes. A single sleepless night can lead to fatigue, anxiety, bad moods, and brain fog.
Above usual sleep disruptors, there are more serious sleep disorders that affect our health long-term and can cause many chronic diseases. Among the most researched sleep disorders are insomnia, sleep apnea, and narcolepsy. Nearly one-third of us suffer from short-term bouts of insomnia, the most common sleep disorder.
People who have insomnia or other sleep disorders may also struggle with anxiety, depression, addictions, memory problems, dementia, pain, obesity, cardiovascular problems, diabetes, hyperactivity, low sex drive, gastrointestinal problems, and more.
What Causes Sleep Deprivation?
There are many reasons why you may not be sleeping well at night, ranging from your daytime habits and sleep environment to interruptions to your normal routine due to stress, travel, shift work, or exposure to blue light in the evenings. There are also more medical causes such as chronic pain, restless leg syndrome, medications, hormonal imbalances, depression, and various other potential reasons.
By pinpointing the cause of your sleep deprivation, you can start to take steps to address the problem and get the rest that your body and mind need.
Sleep deprivation means getting an insufficient amount of sleep. Humans generally need more than seven hours of sleep each night to maintain cognitive performance. After ten days of just seven hours of sleep, the brain is as dysfunctional as it would be after going without sleep for twenty-four hours. And even three full nights of recovery sleep are insufficient to restore performance to normal levels after a week of short sleeping.
Sleep is beneficial to both the functioning of our brains and bodies. For many people, lack of sleep affects their mood, and their ability to focus and/or handle life stressors. It can also impact your memory and have serious effects such as depression and psychosis.
One brain function that buckles under even the smallest dose of sleep deprivation is concentration. The deadly societal consequences of these concentration failures are most obvious and fatal in the form of drowsy driving. If you are studying for an exam and don’t get sleep the first night after learning, you lose the chance to consolidate those memories.
If we look at more long-term effects, a lack of sleep is fast becoming recognized as a key lifestyle factor determining whether or not you will develop Alzheimer’s disease.
How Can We Help You?
The source of insufficient or low-quality sleep at night can often stem from your behavior during the day. Too much caffeine, little or no exercise, viewing screens right before bed, or simply having a bedroom that’s too warm, bright, or noisy, can all contribute to a poor night’s rest. There are simple yet effective solutions you can implement in your life that will improve sleep and bring your daily performance to the next level.
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