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10 Reasons to Get More Sleep

10 Reasons to Get More Sleep

8. Poor sleep is linked to increased inflammation

Poor sleep can have a major effect on inflammation in the body.

Sleep plays a key role in the regulation of our central nervous system. In particular, it’s involved in the stress-response systems known as the sympathetic nervous system and the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis.

Sleep loss, especially from disturbed sleep, is known to activate inflammatory signaling pathways and lead to higher levels of undesirable markers of inflammation, like interleukin-6 and C-reactive protein.

Over time, chronic inflammation can cause the development of many chronic conditions, including obesity, heart disease, certain types of cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, depression, and type 2 diabetes.

9. Affects emotions and social interactions

Sleep loss reduces your ability to regulate emotions and interact socially.

When we’re tired, we have a harder time controlling emotional outbursts and our behaviors in front of others. Tiredness may also affect our ability to respond to humor and show empathy.

Plus, those who are chronically sleep-deprived are more likely to withdrawal from social events and experience loneliness.

Prioritizing sleep may be a key way to improve your relationships with others and help you become more social.

If you deal with loneliness or emotional outbursts, don’t be afraid to reach out to a friend, family member, or healthcare professional to get support. To learn more, view this list of resources.

Lack of sleep can be dangerous

Not getting enough sleep can be dangerous for yourself and others.

When we’re tired, our ability to focus on tasks, reflexes, and reaction times decreases. In fact, being severely sleep-deprived is comparable to having consumed excess alcohol.

Concerningly, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that 1 in 25 people have fallen asleep at the wheel while driving. Those who slept fewer than 6 hours were most likely to fall asleep while driving.

One 2018 study found that people who slept 6, 5, 4, or fewer than 4 hours had a risk of causing a car accident that was 1.3, 1.9, 2.9, and 15.1 times higher, respectively. This study suggests that your risk of a car accident increases significantly with each hour of lost sleep.

Further, the CDC reports that staying awake for more than 18 hours is comparable to having a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.05%. After 24 hours, this increases to 1.00%, which is over the legal driving limit.

In addition to increased risks associated with driving, lack of sleep may also increase the risk of workplace injury and errors.

All in all, getting proper sleep is important for everyone’s safety.

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