Today’s fast-paced life demands so much from our bodies. Getting the right amount of sleep everyday for most of your life is only possible if you don’t have to work or study. Most of us at least has had one day in our lives when we had to stay up late.
For those who are working full-time and have a family to look after, getting eight hours of sleep is a luxury. We can’t just disregard our responsibilities, but our body’s natural sleep and wake cycle is interrupted. Not everyone can also adapt quickly to changes in sleeping patterns. Moreover, you can’t make up for loss sleep later in the week because that will only interrupt your body’s sleeping pattern.
Causes of Sleep Loss
Some people suffer from sleeping disorders such as insomnia and sleep apnea. Other medical conditions also cause sleep deprivation such as anxiety and depression. Medications may also cause loss of sleep.
For most of us, the cause is lifestyle. We often choose to lose a few hours of sleep so we watch late night shows or maybe for more noble reasons such as doing homework or waking up to feed the baby.
The Effects of Sleep Loss
Sleep loss can cause the following: rapid aging, weight gain, depression and anxiety, and other health problems like heart diseases. The immune system has an overall weaker response.
Lack of sleep can also lead to accidents because of drowsiness, poor memory and cognitive processes, and poor judgment. You become moody and unable to focus on anything. Another effect is micro sleep. You fall asleep for a few seconds unknowingly. In extreme cases, some start to have hallucinations.
How Much Do You Need
A lot of things are going on inside your body while you sleep. Growth hormones are released while children and young adults sleep. Your body is able to repair and rest some of the functions it performs when you’re active.
The average hours of sleep needed is determined by age. Infants less than a year old need 12 to 17 hours of sleep. Toddlers need between 11 to 14 hours. Children aged 3 to 5 years old need 10 to 13 hours. Six to 13-year-olds need an average of 9 to 11 hours. Teenagers should at least sleep for 8 to 10 hours. Young adults and adults within the age bracket of 18 to 65 should have an average of 7 to 9 hours. Older adults will need 7 to 8 hours of sleep.
Get Enough Sleep
Practice good sleeping habits because it’s a necessity. Even if you work hard late at night, that will not improve your quality of life overall. It will all go to waste if your health is jeopardized.
Try to keep a consistent sleeping pattern everyday as much as possible. If you have a hard time sleeping, relax and do activities that will help you sleep, such as reading a book. Your bedroom should be conducive for sleeping and try to cut down on the caffeine.