Everyone has had a night or two that no matter how hard they tried, they just couldn’t get to sleep. You also know what happens the next day – headaches, moodiness, lack of concentration, and low energy. When you’re not getting adequate sleep on a daily basis, it can start to wreak havoc on your life. The consequences of poor sleep can be more serious than just something that can be resolved with a hot cup of joe. Here’s a look at what happens when you’re not getting enough sleep – and what to do about it.
Your Immune System is Weakened
When you don’t give your body the time it needs to repair itself during rest, your immune system will become compromised. Your body becomes unprepared to fight off illness and leaves you more susceptible to catching everything from the common cold to pneumonia or worse. It also increases the chances of developing diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, heart attacks, and strokes.
You Could Get in an Accident
Sleep deprivation could put you at risk of being involved in a car accident. When you’re feeling drowsy, it slows down your reaction time making it very dangerous to be on the road.
Your Learning is Hindered
You need to rest in order to think and learn efficiently. When you’re not getting enough sleep, you’ll find that you have impaired judgment, difficulty reasoning, problem-solving issues, and trouble concentrating – all cognitive processes that are necessary for learning and thinking.
It Ages You
There’s a reason sleep is often referred to as beauty rest. Without rest, skin can age prematurely. Reduced sleep causes your body to release more of the stress hormone into your system. This hormone then begins to break down collagen causing skin to look saggy and show signs of aging much more quickly.
Ways to Get More Sleep
These are just a few of the things that can happen to your body when you’re not getting enough rest. If you’ve been having trouble sleeping as of late, it’s always a good idea to go and speak with your doctor. In the meantime, you can try some of these solutions listed below:
Try Health Aids – Traditional natural supplements such as melatonin and valerian have been proven to help improve sleep with minimal side effects. These supplements are readily available in a nighttime sleep spray combined with hemp that can help you get better, deeper rest.
Set a Bedtime – You don’t have to be a child to go to sleep at the same time every night. Setting a bedtime helps to get your body into a routine which can improve your sleep.
Steer Clear of Coffee or Alcohol – Don’t finish your night off with caffeine or alcohol or you’re bound to be up tossing and turning all night. Instead, try drinking a glass of water or milk.
Workout – This may sound crazy but exercising (as long as it’s not too close to your bedtime) will help you get better sleep at night. Start working out at least 3-5 times a week for an hour a day. Whether you go to the gym, start walking, or learn exercise moves that can be done anywhere, you need to get more active. The energy output during the day causes your body to feel the need to rest later.
Life is hectic, but you can’t live your best life if you’re letting sleep evade you. If you’re not getting at least 8 hours of sleep on a regular basis, try to identify the cause and begin making changes. Whether you use sleep aids, get on a better schedule, reduce your alcohol intake, workout, or all of the above you should start to notice a difference in your sleep patterns.