Insufficient Sleep Syndrome: 7 Cognitive And Physical Effects Of This Condition

8th June , 2021

It is no secret that a good night’s sleep is essential for a healthy lifestyle. Insufficient sleep syndrome develops over time when we continuously fail to get enough sleep during the night. It occurs due to our choices that push the time we go to sleep later than when our body expects us to fall asleep. Other than habits and choices, incorrect equipment like a mattress that is not comfortable to sleep in may also disrupt the sleep cycle. Investing in a good quality mattress can greatly increase the quality of sleep. Many people who suffer from it simply don’t realize that they aren’t getting enough sleep, thereby worsening the situation. 

Here, we look at how insufficient sleep disorder affects the healthy functioning of our body:

Effects of Insufficient Sleep Disorder

Evidence collected over the years from studies of sleep cycles increasingly suggests that quality sleep enhances most types of cognitive and physical functions. 

  1. Attention and concentration
    Getting enough hours fosters attention and concentration, which are important for the normal functioning of our body. A disruptive sleep cycle overworks the neurons in our brains, thereby bringing down their efficiency in facilitating brain functions. 
  2. Slowed down reaction time
    As a person continues to accumulate sleep debt, the reaction time is found to increase. This means that the more sleep a person loses, the longer it takes them to react to a stimulus. It has been found that a lack of sleep induces effects that are similar to being drunk. Undoubtedly, this is a cognitive impairment that has led to millions of accidents around the world.
  3. Memory impairment
    During sleep, the brain is busy processing information gathered during the day and forming memories. If you’ve ever pulled an all-nighter only to realize in the morning that you can’t recall much of what you learned during the night, you know how this feels. Good quality sleep is necessary to create lasting memories.
  4. Long-term disorders
    Sleep plays an important role in healing, repairing and maintaining the efficiency of heart vessels. Inadequate sleep is likely to result in chronic cardiovascular disease and puts one at an increased risk of heart attacks and strokes. Sleep insufficiency is also seen to hamper the proper release of insulin, thereby increasing the chances of diabetes.
  5. Obesity
    Sleep influences the hormones that control the feelings of hunger and fullness. Without enough sleep, the hormone that makes you feel hungry is released in excess, making you overeat. This explains why we tend to snack a lot when we pull an all-nighter. Thus, a lack of sleep makes one vulnerable to overweight and obesity. 
  6. Lowered immunity
    Important substances that help with immunity, like antibodies and cytokines, are produced during sleep. Sleep deprivation hampers the immune system from producing these substances, increasing the chances of all kinds of diseases.
  7. Bad Judgements
    Sleep deprivation affects judgments by making people focus on the potential reward without considering the downsides. Research has shown that people who don’t get enough sleep are more likely to make risky choices, thereby increasing the chances of mistakes. Inadequate sleep also impairs our ability to learn from these mistakes, thereby worsening the situation.

Best way to prevent insufficient sleep syndrome is to ensure that one gets adequate, quality sleep. Besides working on the sleep schedule and the right environment, proper equipment is also necessary to enable long and comfortable sleep. Choosing the right mattress is an extremely beneficial step that will facilitate a hassle-free sleep cycle. 

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