Sleep Deprivation: Causes, Symptoms, and Remedies

A single sleepless night can throw off the entire week, inciting crankiness and fatigue in even the peppiest of people. The immediate EFFECTS of a bad night’s sleep are well-known, but true sleep deprivation can have long-lasting effects on the body. 

Causes of Sleep Deprivation:

Sleep deprivation is caused by a regular lack of sleep, or poor quality of sleep. These sleep patterns can be caused by any number of lifestyle choices: shift work, deadlines, increased screen time throughout the day, or sleeping conditions. Some health issues contribute to sleep deprivation, like chronic pain, depression, anxiety, narcolepsy, and sleep apnea. These lists are nonexhaustive, but help to illustrate just how many factors can disrupt healthy sleep schedules. 

Symptoms of Sleep Deprivation

Sleep deprivation can manifest as fatigue, reduced sex drive, irritability, and lack of focus. Poor sleep quality has been known to increase risk of accidents due to drowsy driving.This condition can have long-term effects on the immune system, making those suffering from sleep deprivation more prone to infection. A lack of sleep can also increase risk of heart disease. Sleep has an effect on insulin levels, which can cause a higher risk of type 2 diabetes. Sleep deprivation makes it more difficult for the brain to form new memories, impacting work, school, and social development. Sleep deprivation can develop into psychosis, stroke, diabetes, heart attack, and hypertension. 

Remedies for Sleep Deprivation:

Home care strategies for sleep deprivation can include getting regular exercise, turning off electronic devices before bedtime, limiting use of caffeine and alcohol in the evening, and maintaining a regular sleep schedule. 

There is no guarantee of success for sleep deprivation solutions and remedies. Always consult a doctor if symptoms become serious. Doctors might use behavioral and cognitive treatments or prescribe medication to help with sleep deprivation.