Sleep Deprivation Can Kill You. What Sleeping Less Than 7 Hours Per Night Does To Your Body And Brain

You count calories, exercise and do pretty much everything your doctor said. But, do you sleep well at night? Unfortunately, most people ignore this part of their everyday life. According to experts, you should sleep at least 7 hours at night. Sleep deprivation can be the underlying cause of your health problems. Read that again.
During an interview with the New York Times, technology giant Elon Musk said he suffers from exhaustion, and it’s all because of his packed lifestyle. His friends were worried about his health, and the effect this lifestyle has on his overall well-being.

Arianna Huffington, the founder of Huffington Post, wrote an open letter to Musk, and addressed his exhaustion.

Do you know that Musk works 120 hours a week? He spends all these hours away from his family and friends. Vacations are a big ‘no,’ and Musk is probably killing his vision and creativity. Huffington wrote that Musk needs to get some time to reconnect with himself, the people he loves and his wisdom.

Working hard is good sometimes, but it’s much better if we all work in a way that helps us make better decisions.

Good sleep is important
Straying from our circadian rhythm or sleep cycle triggers a chaos in our body. Nobody is perfect. However, spending your nights awake to become perfect will keep you away from your goal.

Your body is designed to get proper rest. A good night’s sleep optimizes brain function, increases alertness, cleanses brain and boosts immunity.

How much do you sleep at night? Here’s how to find out. Go to bed without setting up an alarm clock. Do this for a few days and you will determine your sleep hours.

Common symptoms of sleep deprivation
Sleep deprivation isn’t something that goes unnoticed. It causes serious health conditions, and here are some of its most common symptoms:

1. Chronic fatigue

2. Grogginess or crankiness

3. Recurrent health issues

4. Concentration issues or inability to complete tasks

5. Weight gain

Chronic sleep deprivation throws your body out of control. You may end up developing metabolic syndrome. It’s a condition triggered by chronic inflammation in the body. Metabolic syndrome results in heart disease, diabetes and obesity.

Sleep deprivation affects your brain, too. Hormonal imbalances make you depressed and anxious. Mental health issues are oftentimes linked to sleep deprivation.

The National Health Institute conducted a study based on prescription sleeping pills. The results showed that these drugs provide marginal benefits when compared to placebo. Medicating your sleep is unhealthy and has a detrimental effect on your overall well-being.

Sleep longer and better
We have a few tips on how to improve your sleep and put your sleep routine under control:

1. Dark is good
Blue light lowers the production of melatonin or the sleep hormone. Artificial light makes you alert, and even the tiniest ray of blue light affects your sleep. Turn off any light before going to bed.

2. Avoid technology 60-90 minutes before bedtime
Your body needs 60-90 minutes to recover its melatonin levels after being exposed to blue light. Some devices have sleep settings that filter out this light.

3. Relax
Going to bed stressed out is not a good idea. Try to relax and calm your brain down. Read to a dim light, meditate or do a 5-minute breathing technique.

4. Routines are healthy
Research has shown that your body likes routines. Getting out of sync is normal as long as it doesn’t happen all the time. Keep in mind that even one night can throw your body into frenzy.

5. Cool bedrooms
Your body cools down during the night. Lower the temperature in your bedroom to get the same effect, and create the perfect sleeping environment.

6. Magnesium
This mineral helps in fighting insomnia, and puts you in your rest-and-relax mode. It reduces restlessness before sleep.



  • Birth-6 months (AI) – 30mg
  • 7-12 months (AI) – 75mg
  • 1-3 years (RDA) – 80mg
  • 4-8 years (RDA) – 130mg
  • 9-13 years (RDA) – 240mg
  • 14-18 years (RDA) – 410mg
  • 19-30 years (RDA) – 400mg
  • 21-50 years (RDA) – 420mg
  • 51+ years (RDA) – 420mg


  • Birth-6 months (AI) – 30mg
  • 7-12 months (AI) – 75mg
  • 1-3 years (RDA) – 80mg
  • 4-8 years (RDA) – 130mg
  • 9-13 years (RDA) – 240mg
  • 14-18 years (RDA) – 360mg
  • 19-30 years (RDA) – 310mg
  • 21-50 years (RDA) – 320mg
  • 51+ years (RDA) – 320mg
Pregnant women (18+) should take 350–360 mg per day.

7. Melatonin
The lack of melatonin affects your immunity. Melatonin supplements help you sleep better at night. Consult a qualified professional to get the right dosage.

Here's What Getting Less Than 7 Hours of Sleep a Night

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