Many people claim they can get by just fine on seven, six or even five hours of sleep a night. They’re so used to it that they think they’re functioning normally. But when you start looking for the signs, it’s clear that many of those same people are sleep-deprived. If you think you’re getting by on a limited amount of sleep, make sure you check out this list. Each one can be a sign that you’re not getting enough sleep — something which can be very bad for both your physical and mental health.
- Fidgeting: The feeling that you need to tap your feet or fidget in your seat can be your body’s way of trying to stay awake when running on an insufficient amount of sleep. It can also be linked to drinking too much caffeine, though for many people, that’s also linked to a lack of sleep.
- Feeling emotional: People who aren’t getting enough sleep may feel less control over their emotions. They may react more strongly to certain situations or even express feelings in a way that they might regret or be embarrassed by later on. This can manifest itself as frustration, impatience, sadness, anger, etc.
- Feeling impulsive: Your decision-making skills can also be affected when you aren’t getting enough sleep. If you’re acting impulsively, think about whether you got enough shuteye the night before.
- Hunger: People without enough sleep tend to specifically crave the quick energy produced by carbohydrates. If you find yourself yearning for doughnuts, muffins and other not-so-healthy breakfast foods, it may be a sign that you didn’t get enough sleep.
- Memory issues: Forgetfulness isn’t always due to being busy or getting older. It can also stem from not getting enough sleep. Common examples including forgetting where you left your keys, having to re-read an email because you didn’t understand it the first time, and forgetting the name of someone you just met.
- Clumsiness: Sleep deprivation is also linked to decreased motor skills, so not getting enough sleep can also cause you to become a bit clumsier than usual.
It’s easy to chalk up sleep deprivation signs to other issues. However, getting enough sleep is one of the most important things you can do for your health, so don’t ignore them!