After a sleepless night, it is not uncommon to feel sluggish the next morning, and it’s not just your body that can be tired. Your brain cells can feel sluggish as well and when brain cells are tired, you may be more likely to be forgetful and get distracted more easily.
Sleep deprivation can make it difficult for brain cells to communicate effectively, and in turn, it can lead to temporary lapses in memory, affect your vision, as well as your heart health.
Symptoms Of Sleep Deprivation
The primary symptom of chronic sleep loss is excessive daytime sleepiness and fatigue, however, other symptoms may include:
- Feeling depressed.
- Having difficulty learning new concepts.
- Being forgetful.
- Having difficulty with concentration or a “fuzzy or foggy” brain.
- No motivation.
- Feeling clumsy.
- Having increased appetite cravings.
- A reduced sex drive.
4 Ways That Lack Of Sleep Affects The Body
- Sleep and Your Memory. One of the main functions of sleep is that it helps consolidate long-term memories. It consolidates not only through strengthening certain neural connections but also through cutting back unwanted ones, actually weakening the connections that form the memories that the brain has deemed unimportant. The brain makes so many of its connections during an active day, but not all of them are necessary to save. Essentially, sleep is a time in which the brain establishes which of the connections it “needs.”
- Sleep and Your Heart. Reduced amounts of sleep affect the processes that keep your heart and blood vessels healthy. This includes your blood sugar, blood pressure, and inflammation levels. It also plays a critical role in your body’s ability to repair and heal the blood vessels and heart. Research has shown that there are links between shortened sleep duration, which is defined as less than six hours of sleep, and increased risk of heart disease.
- Sleep and Your Immune System. While you are sleeping, your immune system produces infection-fighting and protective substances that are used to combat foreign invaders such as bacteria and viruses. When you are lacking in adequate sleep, it prevents your immune system from building up and strengthening its forces. Without enough sleep, your body may not be able to handily fend off invaders, and may also take you longer to recover from illness. Long-term sleep deprivation can even increase your risk for chronic conditions, such as diabetes and heart disease.
- Sleep and Your Eyesight. Being deprived of sleep can also take a toll on your eyes. Having dark circles or puffiness under your eyes makes you appear exhausted or even older. Having your sleep reduced can also lead to twitching and eye spasms which can not only be frustrating but make it difficult to focus on work or drive safely. Lack of sleep can cause dry, irritated or itchy eyes which can be sensitive and cause blurry vision.
The Takeaway: 4 Ways That Lack Of Sleep Can Affect The Body
Sleep plays a key role in overall health and well-being throughout your life. Getting an adequate amount of sleep can help protect your mental health, physical health, safety, and quality of life
How you feel while you’re awake largely depends in part on what happens while you’re sleeping. When you are sleeping, your body is working to support healthy brain function and maintain your physical health. And in children and teens, sleep is essential to support growth and development.
If you are interested in learning more about health and wellness, I encourage you to schedule an appointment with one of our trusted practitioners at SHIN Wellness. We offer many holistic treatments such as Decompression Therapy, Acupuncture, Chiropractic, Neurofeedback, Psychology, Reiki, Nutrition, Corrective Exercises, and Massage. If you need some help figuring out what service is right for you, try our personalized consultation. Our Wellness Center and Chiropractor office in Miami Florida specializes in restoring your health!