Most of us tend to have limited or interrupted sleep. This is especially true when there is a newborn in the house! It can be really hard to manage when you’re so tired though. They often call it ‘baby brain’ or ‘mommy moments’ when mistakes are made due to tiredness. Of course, labeling it doesn’t improve things. What you need are more sleep and more rest. But what if you’re having those ‘mommy moments’ when there is no baby demanding feeds at 3am?
Poor quality sleep can have many adverse effects on your life. Not only will you find that you’re making those silly errors like pouring coffee in the baby’s bottle. You might find you’re making quite a lot of big mistakes too, like sleeping through your alarm for work or even falling asleep at the wheel of your car. The list can go on and on, but here are just 5 of the bad things that can happen when you’re not getting quality sleep each night.
If you’re not sleeping well, your immune system can begin to suffer. You might find you’re feeling run down quite a lot, and this is just going to make you even more tired. Shifting colds takes longer than usual, and cuts and grazes seem to take ages to heal too. It is during sleep that your body heals itself, regenerating and replacing cells in the body. Without quality sleep cycles, you’ll find your body struggles to do this, and you might be facing far more illness than usual. Try to keep exercising and indulge in a massage to help you sleep more soundly.
Your mental health can also suffer enormously due to a lack of quality sleep. You will naturally be moody and irritable after one night of disturbed sleep. But if it keeps happening, you can be at risk of anxiety and even depression.
A lack of sleep messes up our blood sugar quite a lot. You’ll find that you might need extra meals to sustain you during the hours you’re awake instead of sleeping. Worse still, you’ll be feeling really hungry all the time too. An increase in Cortisol, the stress hormone, might lead to further unnecessary eating and weight gain can happen quite quickly.
Of course, the extra stress and worry about your lack of sleep can also lead to dramatic weight loss. Any fluctuations in your weight should be a concern to you and your doctor. It can lead to serious health problems with your heart and other internal organs. If the cause of your sleep problems is sleep apnea, you may be at much higher risk of this already. The symptoms of sleep apnea include snoring and choking noises because the sufferer is struggling to breathe correctly.
Loss Of Mental Acuity
It’s true that you can struggle to focus and concentrate when you’ve had a bad night. What many of us don’t consider is how that lack of focus while we’re driving can be incredibly dangerous. Add any kind of distraction like the phone ringing or a child crying, and you might be at a great risk of having a car accident.
If you can’t get your head around the tasks you’re allocated at work, you might find it difficult to keep your boss off your back. Of course, if your role involves the use of heavy machinery, you might be putting yourself and everyone else at risk if you can’t concentrate. Even if you incorrectly complete a form, the consequences can be far-reaching and quite serious. But would you take a sick day?
If you regularly suffer from pain, you may notice that the problem increases if you don’t sleep well. The sensation of pain is produced by your nerves, but a lack of sleep can easily give the impression that you are in even more pain. This can cause you to become distracted, and too uncomfortable to manage. You might adjust your posture to compensate, and this can lead to further injury as you shift your weight to one side.
Sleep is an essential function for many reasons. It is believed that memories of the day are filed away during our sleep cycles so they might be recalled later on. That would suggest that no sleep means no memories! It is, of course, much harder to recall things that happened correctly when we’ve struggled to sleep the night before. However, you might also find that memories become muddled, causing confusion and the odd argument!
If you’re concerned about sleep apnea or other problems associated with poor quality sleep, it’s important to speak to your doctor. The side-effects of poor sleep are very serious. The consequences can be even worse.