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The Vitality of Sleep and Good Health

We always knew sleep was good for you.

Sleeping is an essential task for almost every living creature, and humans are no exception to this rule. Without sleep, humans turn into fatigued animals that get little to no worthwhile work finished. Sleep also has implications for the mental and physical health of humans. For this reason, sleep is the most important part of a person’s health.

Sleep and the Heart

Diabetes and heart disease are preventable with a healthy amount of sleep. Already, millions of Americans do not get enough sleep. Some of the lack of sleep is explained by social life, but other parts are due to legitimate sleeping disorders. It turns out that the cardiovascular system does not appreciate the sleep deprivation, whether it stems from choice or from disorder.

A lack of sleep places stress on the heart and vein, which raises the risk for issues with the fundamental organ system. Obesity, coronary artery disease, high blood pressure, and type II diabetes. Getting less than six hours of sleep per night is linked with these health complications. The connection with obesity is even more fascinating.

Obesity and sleep deprivation seem to be linked through how processes energy intake and reward. People who sleep too little tend to eat more sweet, fatty foods and less vegetables. The lack of sleep also increases fatigue in those who suffer from it. The fatigue encourages people to avoid exercise. Combined with the unhealthy eating, obesity is a likely result. The resultant obesity stresses the heart more than is necessary.

Sleep and Anxiety

A lot of anxiety can loss of sleep that can cause more anxiety. It is a vicious cycle that should be curtailed in order to prevent other health problems like heart disease. The brain, anxiety, and sleep deprivation are things that should be kept as far away from each other as possible.

In studying people who are sleep deprived, scientists have found that those people have active brain regions associated with excessive worrying and anxiety. The brain patterns observed mimic the brain patterns of people who suffer from anxiety. Other studies have found that people who suffer from an anxiety disorder are much more likely to suffer from loss of sleep.

Anxiety alone puts extra stress on physical body systems, and the problem is magnified when sleep deprivation is added to the mix. While this research may not provide a cure for anxiety, it does provide a potential treatment option. Helping restore quality sleep in people with anxiety may relieve them of some of their symptoms and improve their overall health.

Sleep and the Workplace

Only people who are sleep deprived can see how their lack of slumber reduces how efficiently work is completed. A lack of sleep reduces creativity, productivity, and performance. This harms both the employer and the employee; although, the harm is more physical for the employee. Employees with too little sleep have a harder time getting along with coworkers and completing tasks.

A lack of sleep can be dangerous in more physically demanding jobs. Perception, decision making, and reaction time are all reduced by sleep loss. In a construction job or a factory job, this could result in severe injury or even death.

The best way to combat this is by allowing employees to take one short nap outside of their regular nightly sleep, and this sort of sleep schedule is referred to as biphasic sleep. Polyphasic sleep occurs when a person sleeps in more than two blocks a day. Research points to this sort of sleep as unhealthy, causing problems similar to sleep deprivation.

Sleep and Health Conclusions

Sleep is vital to good health. Without it, heart disease and obesity risks are higher. Sleep deprived people are more likely to suffer from anxiety disorders, and sleep deprived employees cannot work as well as those who are not without sleep. Sleep is vital for good health.

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