result is only associated with chronic insomnia, not just poor sleeping habits. Type 2Diabetes is a very serious condition that affects millions of people worldwide. It isassociated with several other debilitating conditions as well, including hypertension, highcholesterol, blindness, kidney failure, obesity, and many more.5.
:Lack of sleep affects almost all aspects of our
physiological and psychological health. Sleeplessness has a negative effect on our body’s
ability to heal itself. In other words, insomnia and frequent sleepless nights may lead to a
decrease in your immune system’s ability to function
properly. A weakened immunesystem (as one might imagine) can lead to several very serious complications. For example, in the study linked to above, individuals who received less than seven hours of sleep a night were almost three times more likely to develop the common cold than thosewho received eight or more hours of sleep. Even more worrisome, a weakened immunesystem can lead to chronic disease and severe infections. Several studies have put forthdata that suggests a link between the production of disease-fighting cells (white bloodcells) and adequate sleep.6.
:Another serious side effect insomnia can have is memory loss. It iswidely known that sleep is the time during which our brains process all the informationthat we have gathered during the day. It is during the REM (Rapid Eye Movement) stageof sleep that our brain processes this information and stores it as memory. Individualswho do not get an adequate amount of sleep at night will not enter the REM stages of sleep as often and, therefore, will not be capable of storing as many memories. Memory
loss can affect several different aspects of an individual’s life, including their personal
relationships as well as their ability to think and learn. While it is known that sleepdeprivation has negative cognitive consequences, the mechanisms by which sleepdeprivation affects brain function remains fairly unknown to scientists.7.
:One of the more serious side effects of sleeplessness is the effectsthat it can have on natural hormone levels in the body. Scientists have observed that lack of sleep can suppress certain growth hormones that are naturally produced in the body.These growth hormones help promote a balanced reaction to stressors of the immunesystem, sex drive, and mood. This means that individuals suffering from sleeplessnessmay feel that they are losing self control. Researchers have observed low levels of melatonin in individuals suffering from insomnia, which regulates the sleep-wake cyclein humans by chemically causing drowsiness. Also, many studies have noticed acorrelation between sleeplessness and elevated levels of the stress hormone cortisol.8.
:We can probably agree that trying to concentrate after getting
a poor night’s sleep
can be extremely difficult. Everyday endless numbers of people bothyoung and old stumble out of bed and consume outrageous amounts of caffeine in order to stay awake and alert throughout the day. While decreased concentration is one of thetamer side effects of sleep deprivation, it can have some very dire consequences. Poor concentration due to lack of sleep can (and has) led to several automobile accidents.Every year, it is estimated that there are more than 50,000 adolescents who are involvedin car accidents caused by lack of sleep. However, because sleep deprivation cannot bemeasured posthumously, it is impossible to determine whether it is a factor in accidentswhen the driver does not survive.9.
:While it isn’t all that difficult to believe that chronic pain may cause someone to
have trouble sleeping, many researchers believe that lack of sleep may actually