Top 6 Signs You Are Sleep Deprived
Our humanistic bodies cannot function without two vital components: food and rest. When we lack sleep, everything in our body suffers. Our organs don’t work the way we should. Oxygen doesn’t get to our brain, which disrupts our concentration. If you miss too much sleep, your brain starts to shrink. You’re more likely to encounter heart disease, stroke or diabetes (the three leading causes of death) due to your compromised immune system. And, believe it or not, that’s just the tip of the iceberg. How do you know if you’re sleep deprived? Look for these key warning signs to get you on the track to better health.
You’re Always Hungry
Our bodies need energy to function. This energy is what gasoline is to cars. Without gasoline, you’re stuck and not going anywhere. If your body hasn’t any energy, you’re fatigued and exhausted. Our body gets this energy through food. If you’re always snacking on salty or sugary foods, this is one sign that you are sleep-deprived.
While some chocolate does have caffeine, it is no substitute for sleep. Start tracking your eating habits in a food journal and you’ll be surprised. Do you eat a grilled cheese at 2 a.m. or a bowl of oatmeal after the 10 o’clock news? Train yourself to eat three meals a day (breakfast, lunch and dinner) and then a healthy snack in-between each meal, such as an apple or protein bar. Then, skip the nap and go to bed at a regular hour.
You’re More Impulsive
There’s boxes on your doorstep from stores every few days, yet you haven’t any recall of ordering these items. Sometimes, when we can’t sleep, it’s common to get on our phones, computers or tablets and shop online. Our carts fill up with items we would not normally buy if we were well-rested. For instance, we may not buy Donald Trump toilet paper or a baby pacifier that has a mustache on it. By the way, these are both on Amazon. Yet, when we are sleep deprived, we are often not in the right mindset as we normally would be. Things seem funnier or more outrageous, so of course we’re going to buy them! (But we really shouldn’t, and hopefully you can get your money back.)
Your Memory’s Failing.
Isn’t her name Susan? Shoot! I forgot my dentist appointment. What date is your sister’s wedding again? All of these commonalities should be easy to be remember, but when you’re sleep deprived, your brain is not performing at its best. In fact, your brain is suffering because it’s not getting the rest it needs at night to reenergize and do well the next day. As a result, your memory starts to go. Your short-term memories are the first memories critically attacked. You lost your keys and can’t remember where they are or you forgot to walk the dog and he wet on the carpet. If you lose more sleep, your long-term memories tend to slip away and you’re at higher risk for dementia.
Your Motor Skills Lack
Trip over a step and that’s an accident. But do it two or five times and you may have lost too much sleep. If you bump into others on the sidewalk, fall out of a chair or have difficulty organizing something, it may be due to sleep deprivation. While you can always eat food to gain energy, your body cannot run on food alone. Remember when I said our body runs on two vital functions? Sleep works as food’s partner in crime. When you’re well-rested, your handwriting is going to look better, you’re going to have better posture and when you go to chop those vegetables—you’re more likely not to chop off your finger.
Your Emotions Change
Normally you are upbeat, cheerful and happy. Yet lately you have moody, irritable and grouchy. What changed? When we are well-rested, we feel like champions that take on anything (and anybody!) in the world. Yet, when our body is robbed of this sleep, our brain flips a switch. It doesn’t get what it wants and your moods changes are a cry for help that is desperately needs a change. Your family and friends see a person that constantly yells or throws tantrums, but what they should see is a person crying out for help. Something in your life has changed to the point where it’s out of control. The sooner you get back on track, the healthier your body (and mind) will be.
You Fall Asleep Anywhere
This warning sign is not scary but downright frightening. People fall asleep at their jobs or behind the wheel of their cars which endanger others. If you lose too much sleep, your body says: Fine. You won’t sleep—I’m going to make you sleep. It’s the equivalent of parents taking away a child’s electronics these days and shutting off their bedroom lights.
Your eyes start to get droopy and heavy. Then they shut. Let’s hope you’re in a safe area if this ever happens to you. This is why it’s so important to get proper sleep. Whether you’re operating machinery, driving a car or just watching over young children—sleep is vital. We need it in order to survive. If you keep going on sleep deprived, one day it will take your life. So get healthy now; take your life back. There is so much living worth doing!