Not Sleeping Enough? You could be risking your health AND your life.

Posted on : 09 Nov 2016 | No Comments

The brain is the most powerful machine in the world. With billions of neurons and connections it is constantly at work, keeping the body on the go 24/7. According to Gallup, full-time workers average 47 hours per week, and 40% of those adults report working more than 50 hours per week.

Not only are Americans working longer hours, but they also have longer commutes. Working parents are even more stretched with school commutes and extracurricular activities. Through all of these demands, the brain is hard at work, keeping people alert on the morning drive, focused at work and engaged in family and personal life. Every day.

With limited personal time, getting the proper amount of sleep (7-9 hours per night for adults) is often easily sacrificed. The resulting impact on the health of individuals, communities and the nation is dramatic. According to the National Sleep Foundation, 60% of drivers (168 million people) report having driven while drowsy, with more than one third reporting that they have actually fallen asleep while driving. Drowsy driving directly results in an estimated 100,000 accidents, the consequences of which are an estimated 1,550 deaths, 71,000 injuries, and $12.5 billion in monetary losses. (National Sleep Foundation – Facts and stats: Drowsy driving – stay alert, arrive alive, 2016).

The easy solution? Get enough sleep. During sleep, your metabolism regulates, the immune system receives a boost, and the brain consolidates learning and memories. Not only is restful sleep essential for optimal brain function and physical health, it could also save your life.

References:

The “40-Hour” workweek is actually longer — by Seven hours. (2014, August 29). Retrieved November 9, 2016, from Gallup, http://www.gallup.com/poll/175286/hour-workweek-actually-longer-seven-hours.aspx

Facts and stats: Drowsy driving – stay alert, arrive alive. (2016). Retrieved November 9, 2016, from D, http://drowsydriving.org/about/facts-and-stats/

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