Do you often compromise on your sleep to catch up with work or your social life? Think twice about skipping out on valuable rest time, as a good night’s sleep is not only important to feel rested but also improves your brain function, mood, productivity, and heart health. Here are five reasons why sleep is crucial for your overall health.
Proper sleep boosts brain function.
The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute notes that sleep is very important for your brain to work optimally. During sleep, your brain prepares for the next day. New pathways are formed in your brain to help you learn and remember things. Whether you are learning a new game, a new language, or how to drive a car, sleep helps improve your learning ability and problem-solving skills. It also enhances your focus, creativity, and decision-making abilities.
Sleep is important for emotional health.
How you feel during the day partly depends on how well you sleep at night. The first signs of inadequate sleep include feeling irritated, forgetful, and fatigued, according to the American Sleep Association. You may also experience mental health issues and a decreased ability to perform your job successfully.
Sleep deprivation may cause “mood changes such as easy irritability and overreacting to common stressors, having fluctuating emotions, and feeling anxious or depressed,” Jyoti Matta, MD, medical director of the Sleep Disorders Center at Jersey City Medical Center, tells WebMD Connect to Care.
The absence of good sleep can impact your heart health.
In addition to eating healthy foods and exercising, good sleep is vital for your heart health, according to the American Heart Association. Research has shown that insufficient sleep or poor-quality sleep are related to high blood pressure, cardiovascular plaque buildup, and increased cholesterol levels.
Prolonged sleep deprivation may also increase your risk of experiencing adverse cardiovascular events. In fact, people with sleep disorders like sleep apnea have a heightened risk of developing heart arrhythmias, heart failure, and coronary artery disease.
Sleep can also impact your weight.
When you get a full night’s sleep, you feel well-rested and less hungry. However, when you are sleep-deprived, you feel less energetic and tired. To overcome this tiredness and sluggishness, you may eat more than usual, leading to weight gain. Additionally, sleep deprivation may cause an imbalance in the hormones that control your hunger, thereby increasing your cravings for junk, high-calorie, or sugary food, Cleveland Clinic reports.
Proper sleep can improve productivity.
The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute notes that getting a good amount of sleep at night refreshes you and improves your productivity at work and school. If you're sleep-deprived, you may take longer to finish tasks or react to things, while also making more errors in your work.
“Signs of sleep deprivation may include feeling overwhelmed at work, feeling less productive and inadequate in terms of expected performance, having a low tolerance for changes in daily routine, and experiencing interpersonal issues with coworkers,” Matta adds.
Think you may have a sleep disorder? Start your journey to more restful sleep TODAY.
Untreated sleep disorders can negatively affect your physical and emotional health. Sleep testing can help you get the answers you need to receive the treatment you deserve. WebMD Connect to Care Advisors are standing by to help.