Sleep deprivation is such a real problem amongst people of different age groups today. But before we go into the reasons it happens and solutions, what is sleep deprivation? Sleep deprivation is simply not sleeping enough at night. Medicine tells us that one needs at least 7 to 8 hours of sleep every night to stay in top shape.

There are lots of people who fall short of that required sleep hours per night, and there are usually different reasons that is so. Let’s take a look at some causes of insufficient sleep.

For some people, it happens when they change environment, and visit somewhere entirely new. They can’t sleep well at night because of discomfort, and once they return to their house, they start sleeping well again.

There are those who suffer a lot of sleep deprivation due to the manner of work or business they do. Some businesses and jobs come with extra responsibilities that one may need to stay up late for through the night.

Stress and tiredness can also contribute to insufficient sleep. Sometimes, we work so much we forget to allow our bodies catch a break. It gets to a point where it becomes too much it can deny you rest or sleep.

The reason sleep was made available and is highly prescribed by doctors is because of the brain. The brain is like a giant computer that takes up so much. It does a lot of work in the body, and requires resting or rebooting through sleep, and this increases functionality. When you begin to deny yourself sleep, you hamper the smooth functioning of your brain, and sooner or later, it may get too much for it to handle.

The crazy thing about people who don’t sleep enough is that they do not even know it or they don’t care, so even when they begin to suffer certain symptoms, they don’t realise it. Sleep deprivation comes with certain symptoms, like any other health condition. Here are a few of them.

Depression, irritability, puffy/bloodshot eyes, tremor, headaches, disarray (confusion), memory loss, muscle aches, hallucinations, micro sleep, negative feedback to the control of diabetes and blood pressure, weight loss or gain, other psychotic symptoms. A lack of enough sleep aggravates mood and decreases intellectual ability.

The remedy of sleep deprivation depends on the cause. The best start is to consider a concept referred to as ‘sleep hygiene’. Sleep hygiene is improving the behaviour to maximize the amount of restful sleep one gets.

You should consider:

Sticking to a standard bedtime (and even wakeup time)

Making your environment as comfortable as possible.

Avoiding nicotine (i.e. tobacco, cigarettes), caffeine and alcohol before hitting the sheets.

Exercising regularly, but not before going to bed.

Eliminating as much light as possible in the room at bedtime.

Clearing the mind of worrisome thoughts at night.

Staying away from heavy foods for at least 2 hours before going to bed.