4 Health Effects of Not Getting Enough Sleep

4 effects of not getting enough sleep. Most people know that not getting enough sleep at night will cause drowsiness during the day, but many might be surprised to find there are quite a few impacts on your health when you don’t get a good night’s sleep that goes beyond feeling groggy the next day.

The National Institute of Health has conducted studies to explore further how sleep affects our health, and there have been many interesting findings that correlate how sleep deprivation impacts general health and well-being.
Heart issues

One may wonder how not getting enough sleep would have anything to do with the health of your heart and pulmonary system, and in fact, even experts can’t seem to pinpoint the exact reason why lack of sleep increases the risk of heart issues. According to the Sleep Foundation, there are metabolic processes that occur while your body is in a sleep cycle. These bodily functions that happen during sleep help reduce inflammation, control blood pressure, and metabolize glucose. When you’re aren’t getting sleep, your body isn’t able to do the vital work that controls these processes, and this, in turn, can raise the chances of a negative impact on your heart.
Accidents (physical and mental)

You know the drill, you don’t get enough sleep, and the next day you’re making many mistakes at school or work. Forgetfulness is attributed to the link between sleep deprivation and cognitive and physical accidents. Even worse, driving while drowsy causes an increase in the risk of getting into a crash. The CDC states that driving while tired,

Slows down response time when breaking

Affects the driver’s ability to pay attention to the road

Impacts quick-second decisions

Terrifyingly, 1 in 25 drivers have fallen asleep while driving!

Not Getting Enough Sleep Can Have These 4 Health Effects

In addition to the impact on your physical health, lack of sleep also negatively affects your mental health. Harvard Health says that just as with your physical health, during sleep, there are other processes that your body performs. As your body goes through the different cycles of sleep, it enters what is called REM (rapid eye movement). During the REM sleep cycle, your breathing, blood pressure, and heart rate are calm and rhythmic. Studies indicate that emotional well-being, as well as cognitive abilities, are increased. This increase is due to the impact on neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine, which are responsible for that “happy” feeling. Since those with mental health disorders are more likely to have issues with sleep, it creates a vicious cycle.

Sexual health

Probably the most surprising is the impact lack of sleep has on sexual health and function. Sleep deficiency is known to disrupt metabolic processes, which in turn decreases testosterone levels. Not only that, but lack of sleep may also cause lower muscle mass and less bone density. These decreased hormone levels can also happen to women, impacting their estrogen production. Not only does your body make less estrogen, but it also increases the production of cortisol, which is known to affect a woman’s sex drive. Increased cortisol levels also take a toll on the body by causing inflammation, increasing anxiety, and causing weight gain.

Many people suffer from sleep issues. Some of them are health-related, like sleep apnea. Other people have a hard time sleeping because of mental health issues like anxiety, which keep them up all night tossing and turning with worry. Too many people are also sleeping on the wrong kind of mattress and don’t realize that their sleep troubles could be put to rest with the purchase of a different mattress or bed. Whatever the reason for your sleepless nights, the science is precise; getting better rest is a way to better health.

Seeking therapy for mental health and the effects of not getting enough sleep are important to address. Depression and anxiety increases when we do not get enough sleep. Call us today at 407–967–1327 and schedule a 15 minute free phone consultation today. Speak with one of our talented therapist. Why wait any longer.

Originally published at https://lifecounselingorlando.com on April 25, 2022.

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Licensed mental health counsellor and owner of private practice in Orlando, FL. Working with couples, teens, children, individuals, families, groups.

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High Expectations Counseling

High Expectations Counseling

Licensed mental health counsellor and owner of private practice in Orlando, FL. Working with couples, teens, children, individuals, families, groups.

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