Sleep Deprivation: Causes and Effects

Sleep Deprivation: Causes and Effects

Tina Ureten

 

We are all sleep-deprived. Why?

Sleep is fundamental human need. Deprivation of sleep has very serious biological consequences for our health. 


Our sleep-wake cycle is regulated by light and darkness. Today’s advanced technology is messing up with our sleep schedules. Some people blame the root of the problem to Edison’s light bulb. We sleep 2 hours less than we did 60 - 70 years ago. The mean sleep duration is 6.1 hours/day for average North Americans. Only 29% of Millennials - the most stressed and sleepless generation - get sufficient sleep.

sleep deprived man

 

Technology and Lifestyle Changes

Our lifestyles change dramatically. Our minds are under non-stop stimulation by emails, social media postings, text messages and calls. Technology is responsible for disrupting our sleep. Cell phones, tablets and computer screens all emit blue spectrum light which sends wrong signal to our brains and disrupts sleep pattern. Melatonin production is suppressed by blue light.

Woman watching the clock. Could not sleep. Insomnia.

 

Work Habits: Longer Hours

We are also becoming work addicts. Working longer hours and getting involved with work anywhere, anytime. We sacrifice from our sleep time to be accepted in work.

 

Children's Use of the Internet

Children and teens on average receive about 1 hour less sleep than what is recommended by doctors. They use their sleep time by watching TV, playing video games, or just surfing in the internet. That can have a harmful effect on a developing brain’s plasticity.

child staring at computer screen. not sleeping



Lifestyle and Personal Habits

  • The consumption of caffeinated drinks like coffee, tea, soda keeps people alert and less sleepy. Energy drinks is a $ 27.5 Billion business globally. Its usage increased 5,000 percent since 1999.
  • Stimulant drugs usage rose 15 fold from 2002 to 2013. People use it for better afternoon performance at work. Students use it to get better academic performance. 
  • Some medications can cause or worsen sleep deprivation. Talk to your doctor about medications that may interfere with sleep, including some antidepressants, stimulants, and decongestants.
  • Increased stress level and impaired mental well-being are also lead to loss of sleep.

  • Sleep deprivation affects cognitive functioning, decision-making, and reaction times, which increases the risk of workplace or vehicle accidents.

man sleeping at workplace

 

It is not too late to find a solution.

Nightly restorative sleep is essential to well being, productivity, and creativity. If you are among the millions of people who are simply depriving themselves of rest, get some help for a good night’s sleep. Try our BB Weighted Blankets and notice the improvement on your sleep that is also experienced by our loyal customers.

For more information about the research behind our product, check out the Research section of our website.

 

Author: Dr. Tina Ureten