You may have a sleep disorder and be sleep deprived without realizing that you have a problem. Even if you think you've slept for eight hours a night, your brain may not be rested enough. Sleep deprivation has been known to contribute to several mental and physical health problems. Here are some subtle signs that you are not sleeping enough as well as common causes and solutions to help you sleep better.
Signs That You Are Sleep Deprived
While there are many symptoms of sleep deprivation, pay attention to these five signs, especially if they are unusual for you or come on suddenly.
- You are easily irritated.
- You feel tired all the time.
- You are extra sensitive to noise.
- You have trouble concentrating.
- You feel weak and aren't motivated to move or participate in your regular exercise.
Causes and Remedies for Sleep Deprivation
Most people experience lack of sleep now and then, but if it goes on too long, then you could have some of the problems listed above. Here are some common causes and remedies to help you sleep.
You Have Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea is a serious medical condition where you stop breathing while you sleep. If you suspect you have this, see your doctor to determine the exact cause and treatment.
You Have a Poor Sleeping Environment
Sure, not everyone lives in a quiet place or has quiet roommates. See if you can do things like block out lights and minimize noise. White noise machines and fans often work well at drowning out moderate noises from traffic to conversations.
You Have a Neurological Disorder
Sleep deprivation is already a neurological problem. If you already have issues like Parkinson's or Alzheimer's disease or if you have certain mental illnesses, then you are at higher risk for sleep issues.
You Are Over-Stimulated
Caffeine, nicotine, and other stimulants can sometimes last hours in your body. These stimulants can make it hard for your body and brain to wind down even if you feel tired.
You Have a Problem With Your Circadian Rhythm
You may have a problem with your body clock so that you don't feel naturally tired at the right time. Shift work and traveling are often causes of this disorder. Try to make sure you go to bed and get up at the same time every day. Avoid bright light before bed, and don't take any naps.
If you aren't getting enough sleep or if you feel like you're struggling with sleep deprivation, then you may need medical help. Sleep centers can help you determine why you don't sleep well and help you sleep better. That way, you can stay healthy and feel refreshed more often.