For adults, it’s recommended that you get anywhere from seven to nine hours of sleep each night. However, most people receive less than this, clinically qualifying them as “sleep-deprived.” When you routinely aren’t getting enough sleep during the week, you probably think you can make up for it by sleeping in on Saturday and Sunday. Unfortunately, it turns out that your lost hours of rest can’t actually be made up binge-sleeping-in on the weekends. Read on to learn how your rest deprivation could be a sign of a more serious condition like sleep apnea.
The Truth Behind Sleep Deprivation
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that 35 percent of adults in America get less than the recommended seven hours of sleep per day. Have you accidentally fallen asleep on the job, or as soon as you sat on your couch after a long day of work? On average, falling asleep takes anywhere from 10 to 15 minutes, meaning that if you pass out even sooner, it could mean you’re not getting enough rest on a daily basis.
Sleep loss accumulates, meaning that missing an hour of sleep here and there can slowly impact your daily functioning and cognitive abilities. Some additional negative impacts of sleep deprivation include:
- Memory issues
- Difficulty paying attention
Another factor to consider is how sleep deprivation can dangerously affect people who drive on a regular basis. Non-attentive drivers are more at risk of getting into car accidents. Whether you have chronic sleep issues or just got a few consecutive nights of poor rest, it can have detrimental impacts on your daily life and wellbeing.
Debunking the Myth of Catching Up on Sleep
Research has proven that sleeping in on the weekends won’t make up for the lost rest during the week. A study conducted by Harvard Medical School this year found that people in the group that were limited to five hours of sleep noticed changes in their metabolism, a drop in their insulin sensitivity, and gained an average of three pounds over the course of the study.
Trying to catch up on lost rest over the weekend doesn’t do much for your wellbeing or really make up for anything. It’s more beneficial for you to stick to a routine sleep schedule of anywhere from seven to nine hours of sleep each night.
Making Up For Lost Rest
Developing a healthy routine with enough sleep for you to optimally function is a great way to start your journey towards taking care of your body and mind. You can do this by going to bed at a normal hour over your next long holiday weekend and naturally waking up without setting an alarm. This is a great way to learn how much sleep is best for your individual body to function.
If you notice loud consistent snoring, pauses in your breathing while asleep, or dull headaches when you wake up, your sleep deprivation could be a sign of something more serious. If this is the case, you could benefit from seeing your sleep doctor for sleep apnea treatment.
About the Author
Dr. Dustin Lively enjoys improving his patients’ quality of rest by treating their sleep apnea using the latest techniques and technology in his field. He started practicing dentistry in 1997 and discovered that his knowledge can improve patients’ daily lives. He received advanced training to learn how to craft custom sleep appliances so his patients can improve their wellbeing, feel better, and live longer. For questions or to schedule an appointment, visit EZ Sleep Solutions’ website or call 580-782-2027.