How does sleep affect your health?

Why is sleep good for you? and how much sleep is enough?

While you sleep you go through multiple cycles of Rapid Eye Movement, which happens every 90 minutes, and Non-Rapid Eye Movement which happens the rest of the time. While you're asleep, it provides energy to your brain and body, supports daytime performance, your eyes dart back and forth, and your body becomes immobilized and relaxed and your muscles are turned off. Sleep is important because it gives you healthy brain function, emotional well-being, physical health, daytime performance and safety.


The amount of sleep you need changes throughout your entire lifetime. Studies show that the older you get less sleep is necessary.

  • Newborns: 16-18 Hours
  • Preschool-aged kids: 11-12 Hours
  • School-aged kids: 10-11 Hours
  • Teens: 9-10
  • Adults and the elderly: 7-8 Hours

Some people take naps to help "cure" sleepiness. Yes, although it may give you a somewhat energy boost, it doesn't give you the other benefits of night-time sleep.

Sleep Deprivation

Symptoms:

-Depression and anxiety

-Decreased Life Quality

  • From lack of energy you will begin to cut back on daily activities
  • You will fall asleep at inappropriate times

-Increased Appetite

  • Hormones that regulate your appetite can be affected from lack of sleep
  • Lack of sleep can cause over eating which may lead to obesity

-Decreased Immune Function

  • Lack of sleep lowers white blood cells
  • When you are sleep deprived you are more likely to have an illness

-Increase in Heart Attack, Angina, and Stroke

  • People who don't sleep have high blood pressure and atherosclerosis
  • Increased risks may also be related to sleep apnea:

-A series of pauses in breathing during sleep

-Poor quality in sleep

-Stress in your cardiovascular system

-Increase risk of accidents and death

  • People who don't sleep have an increased risk in death. This may be due to decreased reaction time. Particularly increased in car accidents.
  • Being sleep deprived contributes to serious cardiovascular risk factors such as heart attack, angina, and stroke.