7 Reasons Why
Lack Of Sleep
Is Extremely Dangerous
Biohacking Your Sleep Can Help
Your Brain, Like Your Body, Needs Downtime
So many people are busy running errands and bouncing from task to task in their hectic day-to-day lives.
When it comes to a bit of R & R, they frequently make poor choices and then suffer the consequences.
The problem here is that many people are suffering and don't know why.
You'd think it would be simple
The need for rest for the mind and body is pretty obvious. But then, so are many things that we know we should do but don't.- Sometimes it's more important.
The Consequences Of Being Tired
Tiredness & Tragedy
The real danger of not sleeping
Brain fog isn't just some harmless condition to laugh about and just pass off as unimportant.
Well, sometimes it's funny - But what if I told you it could be deadly?
Would it scare you into reading a few more paragraphs?
Nope, it's not a cheap ploy to keep you reading, it's a legitimate reality.
That mental haze from lack of rest can be seriously dangerous. Yep, potentially fatal.
The effects are pretty brutal
If your brain doesn't get the downtime it needs, which is different for everyone, then there is the potential for serious issues both from a physiological standpoint and the possibly catastrophic effects of not paying attention.
Your life can change in split second from being tired
It only takes a second in traffic to lose concentration and a tragic accident could take place.
The Data Is Grim
The bleak but unsurprising truth
The data paints a pretty troubling picture of just how much sleep we get.
Not that this should really surprise anyone.
But why am I telling you this?
You know this. You're an adult who knows that you need to get rest for your mind and body, right?
Don't be so sure.
The statistics are in and it's a bit of a problem
Studies show that 1 in 3 people aren't getting enough sleep, according to the CDC. (1)
That's a scary statistic to think that the person coming towards you in oncoming traffic might be sleep deprived and is behind the wheel of a giant metal killing machine.
Too much hyperbole?
The truth - It's a very real threat and you might be on either side of it...
As Bad As Drunken Driving?
Tired Vs Drunk
The silent killer
It's well known that driving while intoxicated is not only illegal but very dangerous. What most people probably don't know is that driving while tired is, under some circumstances is just as bad.
Most tired drivers have no idea just how much of a danger they pose to other people on and off the road.
The stats on tired driving
According to the statistics sourced from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, nearly 1000 people could die every year from "drowsy" driving. (2)
It's definitely happening often enough to be of serious concern.
It affects so many areas of life
None of this even touches on the health ramifications that lacking adequate sleep can wreak upon your biology.
I don't know about you but I'm really surprised that the need for both sleep and physical rest isn't more talked about as a subject.
Sleep needs more attention, NOW!
Given the risks of not resting and the massive health benefits of getting enough sleep, it's probably one of society's biggest mistakes in not making it a cultural focal point.
Sleep is as important as diet and exercise - Sometimes it's more important.
Lack Of Sleep & YOUR Health
Better Health, Mental Function, & A Happier Existence
All Possible With Adequate Rest
There's a lot riding on your sleep
We know that our bodies tire and we must replenish energy levels to enable our day-to-day activities to be performing well.
Without the necessary rest, you can reduce your cerebral effectiveness or even decay the state of your mental health.
Your Happiness May Depend On Rest Levels
The Power Of Sleep
Tired & miserable
This is an all too familiar feeling. Being sleepy and tired from lack of rest. Feeling low and unhappy because you just can't function properly
Without adequate rest, you will almost certainly not be able to enjoy the normal level of memory recall, fast reflexes, and the ability to perform mathematical calculations that you are used to.
You'd be surprised just how much work your brain does in a day. Well, some of you at least.
So, let's take a look at the 7 reasons why lack of sleep is dangerous:
1. Lack Of Sleep Contributes To Depression
Sad State Of Affairs
This is scary
There's a massive link between depression and lack of sleep which implies that simply increasing your restful sleep every night could go a long way towards gaining a more positive disposition in life and helping to fight depression.
Late shift workers are at higher risk of suicide, which is a scary thought for family members of those working in such industries that require late and erratic shift work.
Science proves a link between sleep loss and depression
According to a study, less than six hours of sleep per night significantly increases the risk of mental health issues, and nearly 9 percent of the USA may meet the criteria of clinical depression. (3)
So, not getting the rest you need could alter your mood a little or a lot depending on the deficit and your inability to function without sleeping for the appropriate amount of time.
With depression rates at an all-time high and a renewed focus on increasing mental health wellness, becoming a better sleeper may just be a step in the right direction for many people.
Depression may lead to substance addiction with many vices (like beer drinking, cigarettes, & barbiturates) leading to further sleep loss.
Clearly, this issue is a serious one
2. Headaches & Migraines
Bad news for migraine sufferers
According to the Migraine Trust, there is an inextricable link between a measurable lack of sleep and headaches & migraines. (4)
Prevention is better than cure. A longer and better quality rest might help to prevent the onset of migraines.
Your brain needs its sleep
The necessary absence of consciousness and the concomitant lack of neurological activity is an important part of the human brain's downtime.
When there is a clear lack of sleep, the excess stimulus may be a major factor in the cause of migraines and headaches.
Stating the obvious (or is it?)
For migraine sufferers, the need for sleep is probably something they've been well educated on in the search to eliminate such a painful affliction (I should know, I'm a long-term migraine sufferer).
Changing the situation
Or course, once you're keenly aware of the link between not getting enough rest, you'll also likely start regimenting your sleep a little better in order to avoid a poor night of sleep
3. Aging Faster
Age Of Decline
Lack of sleep can seriously age you. What you probably didn't know is that even a single bad sleep can have a minor effect on your aging rate.
Science says lack of sleep will age you faster
According to an interesting study by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, just one night of partial sleep deprivation has a negative effect on gene expression patterns in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs)... Which basically, can mean you'll age a little quicker. (5)
Nobody wants that right?
Sleep is cheaper than expensive lotions
Because we live in a world of youth, beauty, and instant appeal, the fight against aging has developed a huge big-money industry.
It seems that money may well be better spent on getting a better night's sleep instead.
Many biohackers understand that most things that fight the aging process are going to be pretty good for their health. Add to this the idea of slowing your biological clock has a lot of potentially positive benefits and you can see how a lot of time and energy goes into biohacking aging.
If you want some really great science-based information on how to prevent, slow, and negate aging then take a look at the link below.
Learn Anti-Aging Biohacks that might help you to fight the aging process and look younger.
4. Cardiovascular Problems
No Sleep = Heart Issues?
The risk to good heart hearth
According to a fairly conclusive study, there is a massive increase in the risk of cardiovascular-related issues for people that do not get enough sleep. (6)
As mentioned in an above paragraph, not getting enough sleep is potentially fatal in the wrong person.
Without sleep, your heart doesn't rest properly
One of the reasons cited in the aforementioned study is that blood pressure, heart rate, and the sympathetic nervous system lower when resting but a lack of sleep means these do not lower in the manner in which they require.
Once you understand this it's not hard to see how a serious lack of sleep can be extremely detrimental to your cardiovascular health.
Heart attack risk
Unfortunately, your risk of a heart attack increases as your sleep decreases.
If you've ever had a really awful night of sleeping poorly and woke up feeling almost sick, then you've more than likely experienced the detriment a lack of decent rest can do to your cardiovascular system.
Prolonged chronic sleep disorders are a very serious health risk.
5. Intellectual Impairment
Tiredness & Concentration
So very many people are affected
It may not seem as important but it's potentially very dangerous.
Sleep-deprivation-based intellectual impairment affects millions upon millions of people.
For the most part, a little sleep deprivation can be dealt with okay but when it's chronic, your ability as you tire to drive a motor vehicle is severely diminished.
So much so that according to an article about the relationship between traffic accidents and sleep from Science Direct, the number one cause of human error-induced motor vehicle accidents is directly caused by a lack of sleep. (7)
That's a surprising fact and not at all in a positive way.
Your cognitive decline can be especially dangerous in workplaces that require intense concentration and/or reaction times.
Also, mistakes in the workplace caused by being over-tired could potentially result in employment termination.
Increasing mental acuity
Some people take shortcuts such as caffeinated beverages but this is a stop-gap measure that doesn't fix the problem, not to mention the risk of caffeine increasing as health decreases.
6. Loss Of Libido
It's All Bad News
A real-world issue
It appears that a lack of sleep may lead to a lack of sex drive which isn't exactly physically dangerous but it can place a huge danger on relationships.
Lack of sexual activity is a major factor in arguments and divorce, so, it's definitely something that is worth putting under the lens, especially if it's at least partially avoidable.
Loss of sexual desire in both men and women
Insufficient sleep causes major libido loss in women and in this study by the Asian Journal of andrology, lack of sleep is shown to cause a major reduction in testosterone and therefore a serious decrease in men's sex drive. (8)
Health changes in low testosterone men
Males suffering from low testosterone can also see diminished muscle growth, increased fat storage, mood changes, and depression.
The psychological aspects of these changes added to the impaired state of someone's tired psyche can affect wanting to be physically intimate.
A vicious cycle in the making
A lack of libido can not only completely change relationship dynamics it can affect a lot of motivation and the consequences of many actions.
Lack of sleep can affect libido in many people. This can lead to relationship problems which can, in turn, lead to some serious stress... Which can affect sleep.
7. Lack Of Sleep Might Be Making You Fatter
Even more bad news
Pretty much nobody wants to get fatter (well, maybe some people) but there's a distinct possibility that sleep deprivation may lead to hunger, an increase in stress hormones, and inadvertent weight gain.
So, being extremely tired from inadequate rest could have a two-fold effect on weight gain.
Lack of sleep can contribute to the body's cortisol production.
Cortisol is the body's fight or flight activating hormone meant to enable catabolic muscle degradation for instant energy. (9)
Losing muscle is bad for your fat stores
Unfortunately, burning precious muscle is terrible for weight management because muscle is one of the driving forces behind how many calories you burn.
Cortisol also contributes to fat storage because it can increase the rate at which you store excess fat.
The amount of muscle you have somewhat determines the number of calories you burn per day and if cortisol degrades muscle tissue and puts you in a heightened state of fat accumulation then it's really something worth paying close attention to.
Studies show a link between insufficient sleep and hunger
According to a study by the University of Chicago, there is a clear link between lack of sleep and an increase in appetite. (10)
The effect has been proven to be very similar in nature to the cravings effect that endocannabinoids have on frequent marijuana users. A tired "stoner" is probably very susceptible.
What's The Take Home Message Here?
Get Your Rest & Take It Seriously
Whilst millions of neural networks are firing at once, the brain is always active, even when you sleep, but when you are awake it is the world's smartest computer... For now!
You must power down regularly.
Make sure you're aiming for 8 hours per night and be prepared to sacrifice some TV time or whatever it is you need to do to ensure a decent sleep.
Giving up even just 30 minutes per night could make you productive the next day and easily get your time back in efficiency and speed.
You might avoid a multitude of health issues
Lack of sleep can increase your risk of heart issues, can age you faster, give you headaches, and lead to potential death, so it's well worth doing what you can to ensure your rest levels are adequate at the very least.
Your cardiovascular health is not something to take lightly. Inadequate rest and recovery should be a rare occurrence, not frequent.
Remember: Lack Of Quality Rest Is Dangerous For Your Health And For Others.
If you enjoyed this article be sure to share it on social media, comment below, and check out our comprehensive biohacking guides.
Learning To Biohack Your Sleep
If you want to learn how biohacking your sleep can help you rest better each and every night then be sure to check out the comprehensive (free) guide on our page by checking out the link just below:
The Definitive Guide To Biohacking Your Sleep
The information contained in this article is offered for informational purposes only. This information is not intended for the purpose of diagnosing or treating ailments and should you wish to seek such advice, please contact an appropriate medical professional.
7 Reasons Lack Of Sleep Is Extremely Dangerous
What You Can Do About It
By: AJ James
Biohacker & Founder
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