Are You Getting Enough Sleep?

It seems like it’s been years since I’ve had two nights in a row with a good eight hours of sleep. Apparently, this is a common problem for many of us, so I assumed there would be plenty of information to be found on this topic and I wasn’t disappointed. One of the articles I came across was this one from Wikipedia on Sleep Deprivation.

This article details many different symptoms known or at least thought to be caused by a chronic lack of a sufficient amount of sleep. This list contains some that we would normally suspect, like daytime sleepiness and irritability, but what about ADHD-like symptoms, memory loss, and psychosis? A cause of diabetes? This list is frankly alarming.

How many of you deal with symptoms like some of those on these lists? How about aching joints and having trouble concentrating? The article cites a statistic saying that “tens of millions of adults are affected each year.” I don’t doubt this at all, but I would suspect that in the United States and other Western countries the numbers are even higher than this.

Here’s an article discussing just how much sleep you really need. There’s a chart in the article that says an adult should get between 7 and 9 hours sleep each night. I have to admit that’s quite a bit more than I’ve been getting for some time.

There is also a discussion of the basal sleep need (that 7-9 hours for adults) versus the sleep debt accumulated by not getting enough sleep. It says that this sleep debt can cause you to still have sleep deprivation symptoms even after you’ve started getting enough sleep again.

I suspect that many of us feel overwhelmed, exhausted, stressed, and even depressed because of a number of factors. While many of these factors can be out of our immediate control, sleep deprivation could be one that we can do something about. With so many symptoms that can affect our daily lives and productivity, it pays to make sleep a priority in our lives and not just something that happens after everything else is done.

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7 Responses to Are You Getting Enough Sleep?

  1. Mike says:

    Sleep is one of the things that I am working on. We’re very good at making sure the kids are in bed to get the insane amount of sleep that 4 year olds need but not so good at getting ourselves in bed. I’m probably getting 6 hours most nights. It’s sad to have to work on going to sleep.

  2. Sephyroth says:

    I admit that I am a pretty terrible sleeper. Suffice it to say that I haven’t been getting what I *should* in terms of sleep. And it’s not sad to have to work on getting to sleep – it’s no different than working on goals you’ve set…

    I wanted to let you know about some of the cool things going on over at the US Blogs Community at Bumpzee. There is an RSS Feed which will give you snippets of every post in the community, both on blogs and in the community itself. Also, you can get a US Blogs button and a list of links to all the blogs in the community. As of now, we’re up to 40 blogs, and it would be awesome if we could get the number doubled by the end of the month. It might seem to be daunting, but we’ve gone from none to 40 in the space of three weeks, so it’s definitely possible. Be sure to tell all your blogging friends here in the States about it 🙂

    Sephyroth
    http://sephyroth.blogspot.com

  3. ray says:

    It’s funny that everything has an opportunity cost, even sleep. Most of us have goals of blogging more and making more money from our blogging, but one of the main opportunity costs of doing that is sleep. Maybe we need to put it on our schedules…

  4. Jason says:

    Not enough quality sleep can wreck your entire health. It’s something everyone thinks about but doesnt do anything about until something serious happens

  5. ray says:

    Hi Jason. That’s so true. There are a lot of bad habits we have that we just keep putting off doing anything about because nothing really bad has happened yet. Thanks for your comment!

  6. After a decade of working in a hospital I know the true meaning of sleep deprivation. It has taken over a year of good solid sleep habits to reverse the process of sleep deprivation. No wonder why so many health care workers have poor health.

  7. Pingback: Living At a Deficit at FreshBlogger

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