Why is sleep deprivation bad for me?

Lack of sleep can make doing almost everything we need to do much more difficult. Trying to do a job while sleep deprived often leads to poor job performance, something we all want to avoid. This can be particularly problematic for those who make important and far-reaching decisions about the lives of others, such as pilots and air traffic controllers.

We know this about sleep deprivation: there are real physiological and psychological effects as we deprive our bodies of a basic physical need. Our judgment isn’t always the best. Our reaction time slows, our memory decreases, our bodies and minds slowdown in an effort to preserve the energy we have left. In addition the more sleep deprived we get the less we notice it! Dr. Michael Breus
Carol Ash, DO
Pulmonary Disease
The side effects of too little sleep extend far beyond yawning. To find out how detrimental sleep deprivation can be, watch this video featuring sleep medicine expert Dr. Carol Ash.
Maoshing Ni, PhD, LAc
Geriatric Medicine
Around 48% of Americans suffer from insomnia (the inability to fall asleep or stay asleep) a few nights a week, while 22% have it every night. So you’re not the only one staring at the ceiling in the middle of the night.

In Chinese medicine, nighttime is yin time -- or simply, when the body takes care, repairs and regenerates itself. So it isn’t surprising that not only does sleep deprivation cause depression, memory problems and lack of concentration, but new studies have linked insomnia with long-term health consequences including congestive heart failure, psychological disorders and substance abuse.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.