23 February 2011
By Shailvee Sharda
Sleep deprivation may lead to impaired glucose tolerance & elevated BP. In other words, it may cause diabetes, hypertension and obesity
Lack of sleep is fast emerging as a key reason behind growing heart ailments. Recent researches in London show that the risk of such ailments is 48% more in those who do not sleep properly. The scenario could be same for Lucknowites too.
Pulmonary physician Dr BP Singh says ideally a person should sleep for seven hours. But those sleeping for less than four hours or those sleeping for more than 10 hours are bound to suffer from sleep disorders.
"Sleep deprivation could lead to impaired glucose tolerance, reduced insulin sensitivity and elevated blood pressure. In other words, it can lead to diabetes, hypertension and obesity – a precursor to cardiac ailments," he says.
City–based cardiologist Dr Nakul Sinha says combination of sleep deprivation and stress is lethal. "Many patients do not even realise that they are falling in this vault of diseases. Last week I attended to a 28–year–old man who had suffered a massive heart attack. It took a lot of effort in saving his life," said Dr Sinha.
Dr Sinha says 15–20% of patients who come in emergency with heart attack are first–timers who never suspected they could have a heart disease. He, however, clarifies that lack of sleep alone is not a stimulus. "Sleep deprivation upsets a person’s circadian rhythm which reflects on hormonal and functional cycles. This change is dangerous," he warns.
Head, pulmonary medicine department, CSMMU, Prof Rajendra Prasad says the link between sleep deprivation and heart disease is ignored by all.
"In fact, research says poor sleep could also lead to strokes," Prof Prasad pointed out.
Finding a philosophy behind the skewed cycle of ‘sleep’ and ‘wake’ around which humans survive, Dr Prasad said, "we are a sleep sick society. According to a study, humanity today sleeps 20% less than its ancestors a hundred years ago." he said.
Intriguingly, individuals do not realise that a purposeful day is no guarantee to a good night sleep. Contrary to this, a good night sleep is the keeps a person healthy while promising an active and purposeful day.
The reason is, sleep rejuvenates both mind and body by restoring the vital energies and making growth hormones work in peace. So, have a good night sleep.
What is Sleep Deprivation
- Ideal sleeping time is about seven hours.
- Those sleeping for less than five hours and more than 10 hours suffer from sleep–related disorders.
- Lack of sleep, technically known as sleep deprivation, is more common.
- Lately, it has been found that sleep deprivation contributes to cardiac ailments.
- The risk of suffering from cardiac diseases is 48% higher in a sleep deprived person.
- Experts say lack of sleep can lead to impaired glucose tolerance, reduced insulin sensitivity and elevated blood pressure.
- 93% Indians are sleep deprived, getting less than eight hours sleep every night.
- 72% Indians wake up 1–3 times every night.
- Only 2% Indians consult a doctor for lack of sleep problems.
- 62% respondents in the study displayed a high risk for developing obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) while a significant portion suffered from the problem. 33% respondents snored regularly
- 58% Indians believe their work suffers due to lack of adequate sleep.
- 11% Indians admitted they take leave from work due to lack of sleep.
- 11% shared falling asleep at work due to lack of sleep.
- 38% Indians witnessed colleagues falling asleep at work.
- 19% respondents said lack of sleep affects family relationships.
- 15% believed that ability to concentrate is adversely affected
(Source: Philips sleep survey released in June 2010).
- It involves avoiding large meals, caffeine, alcohol and nicotine, light, TV. No reading, playing games, etc on bed.
- MANAGING STRESS by meditation or recreation.
- Trying to sleep WHEN DROWSY.
- INVOLVING MIND IN QUIET ACTIVITIES if one is unable to sleep. Returning to the bed later when one feels drowsy is recommended.
- MAINTAINING a regular wake up time.
- AVOIDING NAPS during the day, and in case it’s a must, it should be less than an hour. Should be taken before 3pm.