While it is a well known fact that sleep deprivation makes people feel tired, grumpy and unfocused, there is more to it than just these outer symbols. In fact, not getting enough sleep can have major health affects due to the influence on the proper functioning of the brain and the body systems. Discussed below are the 7 most common ways in which the human body is affected when it does not get the recommended 7-8 hours of sleep.
1 – Effect On The Nervous System:
The nervous system acts as the information highway for the body and the not sleeping enough disrupts the manner in which information passes through this highway. Sleep deprivation obstructs the formation of neurons within the brain and this leads to lack of concentration as well as difficulty in learning new things. It might also affect the co-ordination skills of the body and thus increase the risk of accidents.
2 – Effects On The Digestive System:
Not many people are aware of the fact that sleep deprivation promotes obesity. Lack of enough sleep deeply influences the level of two important hormones related to appetite, namely leptin and ghrelin. Excessive levels of these hormones can result in night time snacking or overeating late at night. In addition, sleeplessness also results in the secretion of insulin in greater amounts leading to a rise in blood sugar levels and the consequent increase in fat storage.
3 – Effects On Cardiovascular System:
Lack of sleep has a negative effect on the processes responsible for maintaining the health and vitality of the heart and the blood vessels. The body is not able to fully repair the damaged blood vessels and rectify heart functionality due to sleep deprivation. This can lead to serious cardiovascular issues including an increased risk of heart attack, heart failure and other heart diseases.
4 – Effects On The Muscular System:
Proper sleep is extremely essential to maintain muscle mass and strength as the body repairs any damaged muscle tissue during sleep. In view of this fact it is not surprising that people who sleep lesser tend to have weaker muscles and can even make the body feel constantly exhausted and tired. People who miss out on their sleep regularly often suffer from sore and cramped muscle as well as pain in the joints.
5 – Effects On The Immune System:
Losing sleep reduces the production of vital substances like cytokines, which play a critical role in protecting the body and fighting infections. The cytokines even promote sleep itself, so that the body is able to restore its energy for defense against various ailments. With the lower number of cytokines produced due to lack of sleep, the body becomes more prone to risk of various ailments besides which its capacity of self recovery also reduces significantly.
6 – Effect On Beauty And Skin:
The relationship between enough sleep and longer lasting natural beauty and youthful look was established ages ago. Getting dark circles and dull and flaky skin are just some of the well-known known ill effects of sleeping less. It also promotes the development of fine lines and wrinkles making the skin look older and bringing on the ill effects of skin ages earlier than expected.
7 – Effects Of Mental Abilities:
As mentioned before, lack of proper sleep has deep negative impact on brain functionality and is known to reduce the cognitive abilities of amongst individuals. In addition it also leads of reduction in mental alertness and enhances the risk of depression and anxiety. In many cases, sleep deprivation is known to cause hallucinations and other psychological risks such as impulsive behaviour, paranoia and suicidal tendencies. It also enhances the risk of chronic ailments such as Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis and even cancer of the brain as well as other body organs.