People who get 5 hours of sleep usually experience signs of low energy levels, mood swings and daytime sleepiness.
If this is the case with you, you may be wondering if 5 hours of sleep is really enough? And what are the short and long term health effects of sleeping too little?
Before we answer these important questions, let’s see why getting adequate amount of sleep is important in the first place.
Importance of sleep
Sleep is an essential part of our lives and plays a vital role in the overall health of individuals. Research from sleep experts has revealed that adults require at least 7 hours of sleep each night to stay healthy and rejuvenated.
Often we don’t realize how important sleep is for our bodies to regain physical energy, mental alertness and release hormones for restored balance throughout the body.
With sleep deprivation linked to many chronic health problems such as heart disease, diabetes, and obesity, it’s more apparent than ever why having the right number of sleep hours is essential to leading a healthy lifestyle.
Is stress the leading cause of sleep deprivation?
One of the most common causes of sleep deprivation is stress and anxiety – when we are overwhelmed by school or work, our sleep schedule takes a hit.
Another cause is sleep disorders such as sleep apnea or narcolepsy; these conditions make it difficult to sleep deeply and restfully.
Additionally, bad sleep habits like staying up late on weekends, drinking caffeine before bedtime, or checking your mobile or tablet in bed can also be detrimental to our sleep quality.
Is 5 hours of sleep enough if you are a student?
Medical studies recommend that students receive between 7-9 hours sleep each night to ensure they have the energy, focus, and clarity needed for academic success.
While five hours of sleep may be sufficient for a few days, it is far from ideal in terms of providing the optimal level of sleep needed to stay healthy and productive.
Not getting enough sleep can inhibit brain function, increase the risk of impaired judgement, and decrease alertness levels during key activities like studying or exams.
In addition to this, it increases the risk for mental health issues like depression and anxiety.
What happens if you sleep for 5 hours?
Sleeping for only 5 hours a day will cause sleep deprivation, which affects almost every aspect of our lives. The effects will vary depending on how many nights you’ve had 5 hours of sleep.
Short-term effects (1-3 nights)
- Impair cognitive function and memory.
- Cause mood swings, irritability, and anxiety.
- Low performance at work, school and sport activities.
Medium-term effects (3-5 nights)
- Weakened immune system, making it more difficult to fight off illnesses.
Long-term effects (6 nights or more)
Sleep deprivation can cause a number of serious health problems, including:
- Weight gain
- Heart disease
- Higher blood pressure
Tips to get more sleep
Here are a few tips on how to improve your sleep quality and get more hours of snooze time every night.
- Try to go to bed and wake up at roughly the same time every day.
- Avoid caffeine after lunchtime and limit screen time before bedtime, as both can have a major impact on sleep quality.
- Create a sleep space that is dark, quiet, and cool.
- Have a relaxing bedroom routine such as reading, having a warm shower or stretching to wind down before bedtime.