Did you ever wake up after a rough night and feel like you were run over by a truck? Or have you ever noticed (and if you are a parent you surely have) how fussy and cranky babies get when they are sleepy? In the past, the importance of sleep of mostly ignored by doctors and surrounded by a lot of myths.
However, nowadays we know that lack of sleep not only affects our physical health but our mental health as well. If you usually stay up late every night watching your favorite shows, read the following and see why you should consider going to bed early.
1. Lack of sleep can harm your heart
Table of Contents
- 1. Lack of sleep can harm your heart
- 2. Sleep lowers the risk of developing cancer
- 3. Sleep reduces stress
- 4. Sleep makes you more alert
- 5. Sleep impacts your memory
- 6. Sleep can help you lose those extra pounds
- 7. Napping makes you more productive
- 8. Sleep may ward off depression
- 9. Body repairs itself during sleep
People who don’t sleep enough often have problems with blood pressure and cholesterol, two factors that are known to trigger heart disease and stroke. Your heart will thank you if you try to get about 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night.
2. Sleep lowers the risk of developing cancer
According to studies, light exposure reduces melatonin levels, which is why people who work late shifts are more prone to developing breast or colon cancer. Melatonin is a hormone that regulates the sleep-wake cycle and it also seems to suppress the growth of tumors. It is recommended to sleep in a dark room and to avoid using your phone or computer before bed.
3. Sleep reduces stress
You have surely noticed how everything irritates you when you haven’t had a good night’s sleep. This is because sleep deficiency causes your body to go into a state of stress. Since it is harder for you to concentrate on anything, the body’s functions are put on high alert.
As a result, your blood pressure gets higher and your body produces stress hormones. Unfortunately, this reaction can make it harder for you to fall asleep, so you will have another sleepless night, and you will find yourself in the middle of a vicious cycle. Try some of the relaxation techniques to fall asleep faster and get a comfortable mattress with a memory foam inside.
4. Sleep makes you more alert
After a good night’s sleep, you will feel rested and energized. Using that energy to stay active and seize the day increases your odds of having another good night’s sleep. When you wake up feeling completely refreshed, do not stay indoors unless you have to. Go outside, be active, stay engaged with the world and you will surely sleep better the following night as well.
5. Sleep impacts your memory
When you sleep, your body is resting but your brain is using that time to process your day. It makes connections between events, feelings, and memories and helps you remember things better. Deep sleep is especially important since it helps you process things better.
6. Sleep can help you lose those extra pounds
Studies have shown that people who do not sleep enough are more likely to be overweight or even obese. This is because lack of sleep impacts the balance of hormones ghrelin and leptin that are in charge of regulating your appetite. Therefore, due to lack of sleep people can feel hungry even when their body doesn’t really need food. If you wish to maintain a healthy weight, do not forget to get enough sleep.
7. Napping makes you more productive
Nighttime isn’t the only time we sleep. Napping during the day is much better than loading yourself with a ton of caffeine. It can boost your overall health and make you more productive. In fact, people who nap at work have much lower stress levels. Taking a short nap during the day also improves memory, cognitive function, and mood.
8. Sleep may ward off depression
Not getting enough sleep during the night can lower your serotonin levels. Unfortunately, people with serotonin deficiencies are more prone to depression. If you wish to lower your risk of depression, you should make sure you get the right amount of sleep.
9. Body repairs itself during sleep
Every day you are exposed to stress, ultraviolet rays, and other harmful factors. During sleep, your body works hard on repairing that damage.
If you have trouble falling asleep at night, try taking a bath, reading a book, meditating, or listening to soothing music before bed.