Why Sleep Matters

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You may think that six hours of sleep is enough, but you’d be wrong.  Over time losing just a couple of hours sleep every night impacts your body and your brain.  Mom, Sarah Chalmers, took part in a sleep study at the London Sleep Centre.  She was amazed at the results and you will be as well.

According to Dr. Irshaad Ebrahim, a researcher with the study, losing just a little sleep every night “is the physical equivalent of keeping driving your car over a pothole, day after day…Your car gets more and more damaged the longer you do it, just as your body becomes more and more damaged the longer you deprive it of sleep.” Chalmers said her sister told her that six hours a night was the ideal amount of sleep and she told herself she would be fine if she just had six hours of sleep.

When her children were young, she felt irritable and not like herself.  However, now that the kids are older, she is able to sleep at least seven or eight hours at night and more on the weekends. When she took part in the study at the Sleep School she was astonished at the difference a couple of hours of sleep makes. The study followed 11,000 people.  Almost half of them were only getting six hours or less of sleep every night.

What happens to your body and brain due to lack of sleep?

  • It causes a diminished mental and physical capacity.
  • There is a drop of up to 60 per cent in problem-solving ability and 40 per cent in memory recall.
  • There is a link between insomnia and a low pain threshold.
  • There is a connection between quality sleep and youthful looks.
  • Sleep also activates hormones that regulate appetite and feeling of fullness.
  • Lack of sleep impacts the immune system and causes stress on the body.

According to a dermatologist, Dr. Anita Sturnham, “Lack of sleep can lead to dull, lifeless-looking skin, and a worsening of lines and wrinkles, puffy eyes and dark circles.” And you should know that you can’t make up for lost sleep during the day.  Chalmers said she is definitely going to make sure she gets a full night’s sleep from now on.

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