Researchers say we spend about one-third of our lives sleeping. Sleeping is therefore one of our most important needs in life. But nowadays we are so busy that many people suffer from sleep deprivation. We actually no longer give ourselves the time to get a good night’s sleep and rest. The sound of the alarm clock is one of the most hated sounds. The day really only starts with a cup of coffee. Sleep deprivation can be very annoying! But what are the actual consequences of sleep deprivation?
Does temporary sleep deprivation affect your health?
In principle, a few nights of less sleep won’t do much harm. However, you will feel the sleep deprivation the next day. You wake up with the feeling that you hardly slept at all. People who are sleep deprived are crankier and more irritable than people who have had a good night’s sleep. They also suffer from concentration problems and their reaction speed decreases. When you’re sleep deprived, you see little reason to smile. At work, many things run on autopilot. We look forward to the moment when it is evening and we can sleep again. Yet these people often have a list in the back of their minds of what needs to be done. This will make you sleep worse, causing the sleep deprivation to persist.
Sleep deprivation is also bad for your mental and physical health. If you always feel tired, you have less interest in social contacts. When you are sitting somewhere relaxed , fatigue suddenly overtakes you. You sit down and yawn and you slowly feel yourself collapsing. As a result, many people feel less like doing anything due to sleep deprivation and prefer to stay at home.
What does temporary sleep deprivation do to your body?
Physically, sleep deprivation is also not good. People start looking for ways to stay awake and those are often not the healthiest ways. Many people who wake up tired skip breakfast because the food still doesn’t taste good. While with sleep deprivation you need a good breakfast to start the day well. Furthermore, a lot of coffee is drunk. Coffee contains caffeine, which makes you feel rested and more alert. A few cups of coffee won’t hurt, but drinking coffee all day long is not good for you. Furthermore, sugar gives you energy, so many people with sleep deprivation eat sweets to get energy. But eating a lot of sweets is bad for your teeth and makes you fat. When you are sleep deprived and you drink alcohol, you feel it a lot faster than normal and it usually makes you even more tired.
Characteristics of temporary sleep deprivation
- Bad mood
- Shorter fuse
- Concentration problems
- Less good reaction speed
- Working on autopilot
- Less need for social contacts
- Drink a lot of coffee and eat sweets
Prolonged sleep deprivation
Long-term sleep deprivation can be a real problem. If you get too little sleep as standard, you can develop serious functioning problems. If you are always sleep deprived, you will feel less and less. You have almost no appetite and no sexual desire whatsoever. You feel less and less happy, and in severe cases you can even become depressed due to sleep deprivation. People have the feeling that life is only about sleeping and that nothing else is important anymore. They don’t feel like doing anything anymore. Some people really go “crazy” due to sleep deprivation, they suffer from mood swings and hallucinations.
What does long-term sleep deprivation do to your body?
Various physical complaints can also arise from prolonged sleep deprivation. Your body needs sleep to fully recharge. If this does not happen systematically, your resistance decreases. If you do not have good resistance, you are more likely to get sick and catch a cold.
Due to insufficient sleep, the metabolism works less well. The carbohydrates are broken down less well. This can cause obesity because the food is no longer processed properly. Diabetes is also a disease that can occur with prolonged sleep deprivation. This occurs because your body no longer accepts glucose (sugar) in the body. If you suffer from long-term sleep deprivation, don’t walk around with it for too long.
Characteristics of long-term sleep deprivation
- Difficulty functioning
- No appetite
- No desire for sex
- Depressive feelings
- Mood swings
- Less resistance
- Obesity and diabetes
Sleep is crucial!
As a conclusion we can only say that sleeping is very important! Sleeping is just as important as breathing, eating and drinking. A person needs a good night’s sleep to function. A night of sleep deprivation is not such a disaster, you will catch up. But if sleep deprivation lasts longer, all kinds of complaints can arise. For example, you get a bad mood, you no longer function well and you can even become depressed. So dive into bed and take the time to get a good night’s sleep! If you really cannot sleep well and you continue to suffer from sleep deprivation, go to the doctor and look for a solution.