Are you constantly in a poor mood and aren’t sure why? Do you feel exhausted throughout the day, even when you felt like you slept enough? Do you find it hard to concentrate? If so, you might be dealing with sleep deprivation.
Even if you are in bed for what seems like 7 to 8 hours a night, that doesn’t mean you are sleeping that long or getting enough rest. Here are some signs that you are not getting enough sleep.
When you don’t get enough sleep, you are much more vulnerable to mood swings, irritability, and even anger. You might find that you are constantly in a bad mood, and don’t even know why. When this happens regularly, it is a good idea to try to figure out why this is happening, especially when you can’t figure out any other reason for it.
Try to take a look at your sleep recently, and figure out if the moodiness started shortly after you noticed the quality of your sleep going down. Remember that your mood and attitude don’t just affect you, but your family, friends, relationships, and other people you come in contact with.
Are you suddenly ravenous? Do you have a larger appetite than you remember having before? This can also be a sign that you are not getting enough sleep. Your appetite changes quite a bit based on your emotional state, and whether or not you are getting adequate sleep at night.
When you don’t get enough sleep, the hormone in your gut called ghrelin can increase. This makes you feel hungrier than normal, and often with more cravings of sugar, refined carbs, and otherwise unhealthy food options.
Your body is craving fuel. This hunger and increased cravings might dissipate if you start improving your quality of sleep.
Another way lack of sleep affects you is with less concentration, focus, and productivity. Maybe you notice that you can’t focus for long stretches of time anymore, or your concentration is failing quite a bit. You might have less productivity at work and are actually suffering as a result of it.
The first thing to do when you have these issues is to figure out if something has changed recently. Start with whether or not you are getting quality sleep. If you think you are getting plenty of sleep, consider the other signs of sleep deprivation as well.
You could also be experiencing lower memory function as a result of sleep deprivation. When you go to sleep, you go through multiple phases, with the fifth phase being REM (rapid eye movement) sleep.
The later phases, including stages 3 and 4, are when you enter deep sleep. All of these are important for brain function, but especially that crucial deep sleep.
This deep sleep is when your brain can hold onto memories from the day before and use them for long-term memory storage. If you never get deep sleep, you might start noticing major holes in your long-term memory.
These are just four of the signs that might indicate sleep deprivation. It might be a good idea to keep track of your sleep to see if there is a trend. Also, keeping track of what you are eating and drinking (especially caffeine) can help you determine if diet is a factor.
There are many ways you can try to change your sleeping habits. But, if you feel it is necessary, you may want to consider seeing a health professional.
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Disclaimer: This post is for informational purposes only and is not intended as medical advice. Medical advice should always be obtained from a qualified medical professional for any health conditions or symptoms associated with them. Every possible effort has been made in preparing and researching this material. We make no warranties concerning the accuracy, applicability of its contents, or any omissions.