Getting enough sleep is critical for your health. It’s been said over and over again, that a 7 to 8 hour goal per night is important. But why? There is a ton of research on sleep, its benefits, and what happens when you don’t get nearly enough. So instead of sifting through all of those research papers and studies, we’ve broken it down to 3 reasons why hitting the hay is beneficial for your well-being.
1. Brain health
Sleeping is crucial for learning, and memory. While you’re sleeping, your brain is developing new pathways in the brain to retain information you learned early in that day and prepare you for learning the next day. Sleeping helps you recharge, enhances problem solving skills, creativity, helps you make decisions, and pay attention. Which are all critical skills to have when doing everyday tasks, like driving. In addition, adequate sleep is associated with higher productivity.
2. Emotional well-being
Not getting enough sleep (or having a sleep deficiency) has been known to change the brain and this can show up in some people as having issues coping with change and difficulty processing and controlling their emotions. In addition, multiple studies have shown sleep deficiency to be related to a number of emotional health issues including depression, suicide, and risk-taking behavior.
3. Physical health
A lack of sleep can increase your risk for multiple health issues and diseases like obesity, heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, kidney disease, and stroke. Specifically with obesity, with each hour of sleep lost risk goes up. Sleep helps regulate certain hormones that influence hunger, it’s possible that you’ll feel hungrier and want to eat more. In addition, sleep is critical in your body’s restorative and growth processes and it’s also critical to keep your immune system healthy and strong.