Lack Of Sleep: 11 Signs You’re Not Getting Enough Sleep

lack of sleep

Ever felt the dizziness during the daytime? Wonder why you just can’t concentrate however hard you try? Are you yawning frequently? Ever felt irritability taking over your mood? Then it’s a no brainer that you’re sleep-deprived.
Sleep deprivation, simply put, is a lack of sleep that eventually makes you less active and reduces your brainpower when awake.

Even though occasional sleep deprivation might not be considered any less than a nuisance, it’s the ongoing lack of sleep that might lead to a case of sleep disorder if not any worse.

Symptoms Of Sleep Deprivation

Here are some symptoms that show up because of an ongoing lack of sleep:

  • Continuous yawning & dizziness during daytime
  • Forgetfulness
  • Sense of craving for more carbohydrate-rich food
  • Irritability
  • Inability to focus
  • Depressive mood

Signs Of Sleep-deprivation

1. You Sleep Immediately Once In Bed

There’s a misconception that once you dive onto your pillow and catch your sleep within 5 minutes, then you are a healthier sleeper. It’s the opposite. If such a thing is common, then it’s clear that you are sleep deprived or worse, it might be a case of some kind of sleep disorder.

2. You Are Becoming Forgetful

The beauty of sleep is that it leads to the process of memory consolidation and emotional processing. Once deprived, it will become harder to form memories and be thoughtful.

You tend to forget things. Unable to remember the works you have done yesterday, unable to remember where you kept your vehicle keys, unable to recall your memories, etc. are signs of lack of sleep.

3. You Are Exceptionally Moody

Sleep and emotional health go hand in hand. One is more vulnerable to irritability, crankiness, and challenges while coping with stress if he/she is sleep-deprived. The more tired/sleep-deprived one is, the more cranky he/she is.

4. You Are Gaining Weight

Ghrelin and Leptin are two of the hormones that affect how hungry you are. Without them, a sense of craving for more food, or rather a sense of eating more tends to rise, which further will lead to gaining weight.

Without proper sleep, your body loses control over the stimulation of Ghrelin and Leptin.

There is also a risk of type 2 diabetes due to excess formation of Insulin because of lack of sleep.

Also, lack of sleep affects the metabolism rate.

5. You Are Not Able To Remember The Right Words

The frontal lobe of our brain is responsible for Speech. It is greatly affected by sleep deprivation. When sleep-deprived, your brain begins to rely on other areas instead of the frontal lobe, resulting in not recalling a suitable word and hence slurring your speech.

6. You Are Likely To Get Sick

As per the study of Archives of Internal Medicine – 2009, the researchers found out that volunteers who slept for less than 6-7 hours a day were more likely to catch a cold than those who slept for 8 or more hours.

Not getting a proper sleep reduces the stimulation of Cytokines which fight infections and hence results in the weakening of the immune system.

Thus there is a high probability that you can catch a cold or get sick more often if sleep-deprived.

7. Your Skin Begins To Turn Dull And Pale

Under-eye dark circles and red & puffy eyes are clear reasons that you are sleep deprived. No matter how much your concealer feigns your face as rested, in the long-term, it is not the right solution for healthy skin.

Sufficient sleep should be one of the main pillars for healthy skin. Getting 8 hours of sleep on a regular basis will improve your overall skin and glow, and maintain a good-looking coat.

8. You Have Trouble In Your Vision

When there isn’t a proper sleep, the ciliary muscles of your eye get tired and this leads to reading things up close. Potentially, there might be a case of double-vision, which may persist for a greater time if you spend less time sleeping. This can be fatal for people who drive or operate heavy machinery frequently.

9. Your Body Isn’t Able To Release Growth Hormones

When you try to stay awake and cut-short your sleep, you are actually limiting the release of hormones required for growth and appetite. This instead leads to an overabundance of stress chemicals such as ‘Norepinephrine’ and ‘Cortisol’.

As time passes, these negative hormones are present in excess and you will begin to show fluctuating mood disorders.

10. You Are Falling Into Micro-sleep

If you are awake for over 16 hours, the body tries to balance itself by a deep healthy sleep. If you are cutting this short, the brain finds a way to balance the body through short naps called ‘Micro-sleep’.

Micro-sleep is a condition when a person’s eyes are open but he/she is ‘zoned out’. This condition too might lead to catastrophes in cases of working with heavy machinery or driving a vehicle etc.

11. You Are Having Hallucinations

If sleep deprivation is continued for a long time, you begin to have hallucinations – a state of mind wherein you begin to see or hear things that aren’t actually there in reality.

Lack Of Sleep: Preventive Options

The best remedy of course is adequate sleep. Restorative sleep helps if at all there’s a necessity of skipping or cutting-short the regular periods of sleep in cases of crucial situations.

Refrain from over-consuming Caffeine to avoid sleep. This has become a general practice lately but this needs to be curbed due to its long-term side effects.

Although not always a good idea, in case non-medical treatment isn’t effective, one can opt for medications that can help induce sleep.

Over dependency on sleeping medications should not be practiced. It’s important to limit the dosage to as small as possible and look out for non-medical measures wherever and whenever possible.

If at all there is a persistence of negative symptoms despite regular and adequate sleep, you should consult a healthcare provider.

Ideally, these sleeping pills are commonly used and can do wonders to restore a healthy original sleep cycle:

  • Lorazepam
  • Alprazolam
  • Zaleplon
  • Zolpidem
  • Diazepam
  • Eszopiclone
  • Ramelteon

Conclusion

Sleep is as important to health as any other contributing factor. Sleep deprivation is a condition that can be the leading cause of several poor health conditions in the future. Mood swings, negative effects on your personal and professional life, blood pressure fluctuations, and even frequent headaches can become common occurrences.
Although there are necessary medications or diagnoses to help, there isn’t a better substitute for sleep deprivation than a restorative sleep plan.

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