13 Horrifying Effects Of Sleep Deprivation

> 13 Horrifying Effects Of Sleep Deprivation

Studies show, we modern people sleep less than needed: 6.8 hours per night. What’s generally recommended for adults is, on the other hand, 7 to 9 hours. So here we have a major problem that has a huge influence on our daily lives. We know that it’s not always your choice to stay up all night in this 24/7 culture, but if you don’t take the necessary measures asap, a lot worse can happen to your body than you might think.  Here are 13 of them:


1. Colds

When you’re not getting enough sleep, you're more likely to get sick all the time. Study shows, when a group of 153 people were exposed to a common cold, those who had gotten less than 7 hours of sleep in the two weeks prior were almost 3 times more likely to get sick than those who'd had 8 or more hours of sleep.

2. Slowness

Researchers gave West Point cadets two tests that require quick decision-making, some were allowed to sleep between the tests, while others were not. Those who had slept did better the second time — those who had not did worse, and their reactions slowed down. A study in college athletes found similar results.

3. Gastrointestinal problems

Sleep deficiencies make Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) symptoms much worse. Regular sleep loss also makes you more likely to develop both IBD and inflammatory bowel syndrome.

4. Distractedness

'Attention tasks appear to be particularly sensitive to sleep loss,' researchers have noted. If you want to stay alert and attentive, sleep is a requirement.

5. Inability to learn

One study of middle school students found that 'delaying school start times by one hour, from roughly 7:30 to 8:30, increases standardized test scores by at least 2 percentile points in math and 1 percentile point in reading.'

But it's not just kids. Short-term memory is a crucial component of learning, and sleep deprivation significantly impaired the ability of adult volunteers to remember words they'd been shown the day before. In another study, researchers found that while people tend to improve on a task when they do it more than once, this isn't true if they are kept awake after they try it the first time — even if they sleep again before doing it again.

6. Unhappiness and depression

In a classic study led by Nobel Prize-winning psychologist Daniel Kahneman, a group of 909 working women kept detailed logs of their moods and day-to-day activities. A poor night's sleep was one of two factors that could ruin the following day's mood.

(The other was tight deadlines at work, btw.)

7. Headaches

Migraines can be triggered by sleepless nights, and 36 to 58% of people with sleep apnea wake up with 'nondescript morning headaches.'

8. Depleted sex drive

Sleeping increases testosterone levels, while being awake decreases them. Sleep deprivation and disturbed sleep, consequently, are associated with reduced libido and sexual dysfunction, and people suffering from sleep apnea are at particular risk.

9. Poor vision

Sleep deprivation is associated with tunnel vision, double vision, and dimness. The longer you are awake, the more visual errors you'll encounter, and the more likely you are to experience outright hallucinations.

10. Lack of Melatonin

Sleep deprivation causes a lack of melatonin in the body, which can cause numerous dangerous side effects. 

When a person does not get enough sleep the pineal gland does not produce the normal safe levels of the antioxidant, causing the immune system to be compromised. When the body is left unprotected, a person is more likely to get sick, as the body is left with no effective tool to fight off a number of ailments.

11. Weight gain

People who are underslept seem to have hormone imbalances that are tied to increased appetite, more cravings for high-calorie foods, a greater response to indulgent treats, and a dampened ability to control their impulses.

12. Memory problems

Sleep disruptions in the elderly can lead to structural changes in the brain that are associated with impaired long-term memory — and sleep-related memory deficits have been observed in the general adult population as well. As early as 1924, researchers noticed that people who slept more forgot less. Poor sleep and not enough of it have also been linked to higher levels of β-Amyloid, a biomarker for Alzheimer's.

13. Death

Well yes, here's the big one: People who consistently do not get 7-8 hours of sleep are more likely to die during a given time period. Put more simply: We all die eventually, but sleeping too little — or even too much — is associated with a higher risk of dying sooner than you otherwise might.