The Dangers of not getting enough Sleep – Part 1

Poor Sleep and Mental Health and Immune Function

What affect is not enough sleep having on you?

We all know the effect a poor nights sleep can have on our mood.

We are left irritable, moody and seeking external supplementation (Coffee!) to bring us back to a normal state.

Did you know that long-term insufficient sleep has been linked with depression, anxiety, and mental distress?

Poor sleep leads to an increase in the production of Cortisol (the bodies stress hormone). Which in turn leads us to struggle to fall asleep easily!

In a study done by Harvard University subjects who only slept 4 hours reported feeling sad, angry, more stressed, mentally exhausted, less optimistic and less sociable[i]!

Poor sleep has also been shown to affect our immune system. This is the bodies system in charge of keeping us healthy and feeling well.

When we are very unwell we all want to go back to bed and sleep right? This is known as ‘the drive to sleep’.

We have this because when we sleep our immune system is better able to fight infection and illness[ii].

Our immune systems fight off sickness in a number of ways. Adequate sleep allows our number of defense cells (T Cells) to go up and our immune system reduces inflammation in the body.

A lack of sleep reverses these processes leading to more colds, cases of flu, stress and mental illness[iii].

This leads to more sick days, reduced productivity, the pain of illness and less enjoyment of life.

Enjoying deep, restorative sleep not only gives us more energy for the day but also allows or stress levels to fall and our immune systems to work at optimal levels.

For more on how to improve your sleep sign up to our 7-day email course. It’s FREE and will give you the information and power to take control and improve your sleep. Find us at





The Thrive Global Community welcomes voices from many spheres. We publish pieces written by outside contributors with a wide range of opinions, which don’t necessarily reflect our own. Learn more or join us as a community member!
Share your comments below. Please read our commenting guidelines before posting. If you have a concern about a comment, report it here.

You might also like...


Get better sleep to strengthen your immune system

by Glenn Paradise
Photo retrieved from:

Sleep Deprivation: What’s Occupational Therapy Have to Say?

by Ariana Gonzalez

Dr. David Samadi discusses why your body performs best on 7-8 hours of sleep

by Dr. David Samadi

Sign up for the Thrive Global newsletter

Will be used in accordance with our privacy policy.

Thrive Global
People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.


We use cookies on our site to give you the best experience possible. By continuing to browse the site, you agree to this use. For more information on how we use cookies, see our Privacy Policy.