On a basic level, if you are sleep deprived it means you are not getting enough sleep. Sleep deprivation can happen for a variety of reasons, from feeling stressed, an unsuitable sleeping environment or even if you are taking care of a new baby.
All of us experience a poor quality of sleep from time to time, but if the issue becomes chronic, then this can soon develop into sleep deprivation.
If you are experiencing sleep deprivation, then it’s essential to seek help as it carries many risk factors from developing physical and mental ailments to the increased risk of having an accident.
Here is some further information on sleep deprivation, along with some of the top ways the issue can be overcome.
Signs Of Sleep Deprivation
- Delayed reaction times
- Lack of energy
- Moodiness/personality changes
- Poor decision making
- Poor memory
What To Do When You’re Sleep Deprived
The obvious answer is to go and catch up on your sleep, especially if the issue is simply disturbed sleep from the night before. Though, for more chronic cases, you should consult your GP before your sleep deprivation has a chance to cause further issues.
In the meantime, be sure not to drive, operate machinery or make any decisions, since without a clear head and normal energy levels, each of these aspects can present various dangers.
Identify The Root Cause
As mentioned above, there can be many triggers behind sleep deprivation. Most of the time, people will be aware of why they are sleep deprived. This could be due to staying up too late to catch up on TV shows, jet lag, a busy lifestyle or because they are a new parent.
However, in some cases, it can be difficult to pinpoint a cause, especially if you cannot remember the last time you had a good night’s sleep. This is where a reset is needed, which involves focusing on your physical health, along with your mental wellbeing to address any underlying issues that are preventing you from getting both a good quality and quantity of sleep.
Avoiding Sleep Deprivation
It’s estimated that we spend approximately ⅓ of our lives asleep, and although that figure is pretty extensive, even if we miss an hour of sleep, it can result in acute tiredness the next day.
The problem is few too many of us actually value our sleep. Yet, sleep is the time when our minds and body get to work on processing the day’s events and repairing our tissues, along with carrying out the bulk of our digestion. So, if you have never had a regular bedtime before, now is the time to implement one, to ensure you get your minimum 8 hours of sleep per night.
Also, consider your sleeping environment, and whether that is setting you up for a great night’s sleep or not. The room should be cool to allow for the rise in body temperature that happens as we sleep, and so if the room is too warm or indeed too cold, you will not be able to sleep soundly.
Remove any distractions from the bedroom such as screens, light, noise or clutter, so that these elements also cannot disturb your sleep.
A wind down routine is also an excellent idea, as it helps to let go of the day’s events which may otherwise prevent you from falling asleep.
Focus On Your Wellbeing
This leads us nicely onto our next point, seen as sleep deprivation can leave people feeling incredibly irritable, anxious or even depressed. What’s needed to remedy this is to focus on your wellbeing, which will help contribute towards a better quality of sleep going forward.
Wellbeing incorporates everything from healthy eating to exercise, along with mindfulness and spending time with loved ones. Consider if your routine is lacking any of these elements, as it could be the reason why your sleep is far from ideal.
As well as speaking to your GP, a therapist may also be able to help with any worries you are experiencing, if stress, anxiety or depression are reasons why you aren’t able to sleep well.
Supplements For Sleep Deprivation
Sleep deprivation is an issue that requires a thorough approach to solve since for many it’s not simply a case of needing a nap – it’s a chronic issue that is affecting every aspect of their lives.
One such way to support your system alongside a healthy diet and exercise is supplementation.
Optml is a two-step supplement consisting of Rise and Rest, that can help you to feel more alert in your waking life, and more rested in the evening so you will benefit from a restorative night’s sleep.
For anyone who is experiencing sleep deprivation, or wants to improve their energy levels in general, we highly recommend giving Optml a try, especially in conjunction with the steps we’ve mentioned above.