Sleep Deprivation Can Be Dangerous To Your Health
If you wanted to define sleep deprivation then you could say it's when a person doesn't get enough sleep to function properly. Sleep deprivation itself can be caused by deliberate acts, have medical causes or just be part of a larger problem with the person suffering from a sleep disorder. Sleep deprivation that only lasts a night or two is more of a nuisance than anything else.
The problems start, however, when a person is deprived of sleep regularly or for a prolonged period of time. The effects of sleep deprivation are emotiona, physical and psychological in nature. In the long term continued sleep deprivation can affect the mental health of a person. Also once your body has suffered from sleep deprivation the effects can linger for quite some time. The human body requires regular rest and it's essential taht you get the right amount of sleep each day.
So what kind of problems can sleep deprivation cause in the human body? First off you'll notice muscle fatigue and a general feeling of lethargy (lack of energy). Your ability to focus clearly and perform simple tasks will slowly deteriorate. Current research shows that you're more likely to have a serious motor accident when you're suffering from sleep deprivation than drink driving. After a few more days of sleep deprivation your skin tone will change and nausea will start to occur more often. Your eyesight will also suffer with the appearance of dark circles under your eyes first and then blurred vision and even color blindness.
These are just the physical effects of sleep deprivation. The emotional and psychological effects are just as bad. After several days without proper sleep your emotional state will change and bouts of paranoia and intense anger can appear where you've never had them before.
Sleep deprivation has also been known to cause dizziness, fainting, headaches, irritability, and slurred speech. The next stage is memory loss, confusio and loss of concentration. Eventually you'll suffer from hallucinations once you've reached this stage then serious mental healthy issues aren't too far away. Clinical depression or a mental breakdown is likely with some people even suffering violent psychotic episodes because of sleep deprivation.
If the sleep deprivation persists, it may even result in the person’s death. Studies have shown that lab rats that were deprived of sleep all died within three weeks because their bodies could not handle the effects of constant sleep deprivation for extended periods of time.
Sleep deprivation can occur natutally in older people and especially in senior citizens at some point in their latter years. As we grow older our bodies need less sleep but unfortunately this lines gets crossed all too often and sleep disorders can then become part of this shorter sleeping cycle with all the same side effects. Estimates say that 50% of people over the age of 64 suffer from some kind of sleeping disorder that can lead to sleep deprivation.
Sleep deprivation is far less likely to occur in younger people but the effects can be seen much more quickly. The effects are more visible in younger people are they can resemble drunkennes with stumbling, slurred speech and delayed reactions all giveaways.
If you find yourself suffering from sleep deprivation then it's important to seek help now. Left untreated this will affect your health and there is treatment available for this problem - be it medication or alternative therapies.
This website is designed to be informational in nature only and should no information on this site should be taken as professional medical diagnosis or opinion. Please consult a qualified medical professional if you have any concerns in relation to your health.