Life can get busy, and as such we can find ourselves getting less sleep than we should. While we may think that skipping out on Z’s merely leads to under-eye circles and feeling a little groggy, the truth is that lack of sleep can lead to all sorts of health risks.
It’s in your best interest to get as close to 8 hours of sleep a night as regularly as possible. While it might not always be easy, it’s worth prioritizing. Here are some of the most important benefits of getting 8 hours of sleep a night.
Improved Cognitive Function
Getting 8 hours of sleep is a critical part of our brains performing their best. When we sleep our brains have the time to regenerate and enhance our abilities like problem-solving.
Studies show that people who sleep regularly are much less likely to develop memory-related diseases. We’re more mentally sharp and have increased concentration when we’re well-rested. In other words, sufficient sleep equates to a healthy brain.
Boosts Your Immune System
When we fail to get enough sleep, our bodies are running on an empty tank. Consequently, we can find ourselves much more susceptible to illness. This is because when we sleep our bodies become stronger as our immune systems can regenerate themselves.
Otherwise, if we’re awake all the time our bodies are pumping all of their energy into the simple act of staying awake, whereas if you had been more well-rested, your body could be focusing on defending itself against nasty germs.
As much as you might like to think that you can function on 6 hours of sleep, the truth is that it’s much harder to stay optimistic and patient when you’re burnt out. If you have a job that requires a considerable amount of concentration or problem-solving, then you want to make sure you’re well-rested.
Rest is also important if you have a family to look after as it can be extremely difficult to stay patient with smaller children when you’re fatigued. So, if you’ve been feeling grumpy recently and haven’t been sleeping enough, then it’s important to make the connection.
Less Susceptible to Injury
Have you ever noticed that when you first wake up in the morning you’re hardly coordinated? When we’re tired it’s hard for us to function, let alone walk in a straight line. In a fatigued state you’re much more likely to do something clumsy and potentially injure yourself. Not to mention when we sleep our bodies rebuild our muscles which make us stronger the next day.
So, if you’re engaged in any sort of physical activity like a sport, sleep can be one of the best ways to enhance your performance and reduce your chance of injuries.