In our modern world, we spend most of our time working, in order to bring home the bacon. Even though it may be way past your working hours, the demands of your role may still require you to continue working from home or meet up with your business partners or clients for a drink.
With that said, sleep has become a valued commodity. While seven hours of sleep may be the optimal duration for you to recharge for the challenges tomorrow, we may not have the luxury to do so.
However, regardless of how busy you are, it is still important for you to get sufficient sleep, as it not only helps you to perform better at work, but also helps you to avoid several health implications, which we will discuss below.
Reduced Cognitive Abilities
The most obvious impact of sleep deprivation is the effect that it has on your brain. Insufficient sleep leads to an exhausted brain, which in turn affects your ability to focus and retain your memories.
This may have a drastic impact on your business dealings. Imagine having a important discussion with a client on a multimillion-dollar deal one night, but not having enough sleep on the same night. Your brain may not be able to keep some important details as memories, resulting in your potentially losing the deal!
Sleep deprivation also affects your reasoning and problem-solving skills, as your mental and emotional state would have been adversely affected. This may leave you feeling impatient and moody throughout the day, which may cause you to make wrong decisions or stifle your creativity.
Accidents & Fatalities
With a high car ownership rate in Singapore, sleep deprivation can have drastic results on the road. Fatigue, as a result of a lack of sleep, can slow down your reaction time, which increases the risk of car crashes and deaths that result from it.
Other than car accidents, fatigue also decreases your concentration at work, putting you at higher risk for work accidents, as well. This not only endangers yourself, but also puts your co-workers at risk of hurting themselves.
Therefore, sleep deprivation may affect more than just yourself. The effects of accidents that result from car crashes or work may extend to those around you as well.
Dark Eye Circles
Other than impairing your cognitive abilities, sleep deprivation can also have an impact on your appearance. One of the most commonly known effects is the building up of dark eye circles.
As the skin under your eyes tends to be thinner, a lack of sleep can cause the retention of blood and fluid under the skin, which results in a darker colour, as well as causes swelling and puffiness.
Having dark eye circles may then cause you to look lethargic and sluggish, which may give off a bad impression, depending on the person that you are interacting with. You certainly would not want your dark eye circles to be the focal point of attention!
While having ample sleep is a good remedy to prevent blood and fluid buildup under your eyes, you can also opt for a dark eye circle removal treatment.
Reduced Immunity & Diseases
While you are sleeping, your immune system is hard at work, producing substances that will help you combat risks to health such as viruses and bacteria. Therefore, if you are not sleeping, your immune system cannot get to work, which means that your body will lack these essential substances to defend you against health risks.
Some known health problems associated with sleep deprivation are diabetes, heart disease, stroke and high blood pressure. A study has also revealed that sleep deprivation can lead to a 36% increase in the risk of developing colorectal cancer.
While it is beneficial for you to utilise your time fully on work, it is more beneficial for you to get ample sleep in order to avoid these health risks, which will drain you physically, mentally and financially.
Sleep deprivation also affects two hormones related to your digestive system. The first hormone is leptin, which transmits information to your brain, telling it that you have eaten enough.
However, a lack of sleep causes your brain to reduce the level of leptin and raises the level of the second hormone, ghrelin, instead. Ghrelin is a hormone which stimulates your appetite. Increased levels of ghrelin may then cause you to overeat.
Other than affecting the levels of leptin and ghrelin, sleep deprivation may also result in higher levels of insulin being released after your meal, which builds up fat in your body, putting you at higher risk for type 2 diabetes. In fact, a study has shown that sleep deprivation leads to nearly three times the risk for type 2 diabetes.
Your health and weight are within your control. Start taking action today to get healthier and more productive!