TOP 10 REASONS WHY SLEEP IS ESSENTIAL TO INTELLIGENCE, HEALTH, AND HAPPINESS
Why Is Sleep Important?
- Memory During sleep, the brain is actively sorting and storing information from the day’s activities.
- Brain cleaning. Sleep is the brain’s housekeeping period when the toxins that build up during waking hours are flushed out.
- Creative Connections. The sleeping brain makes connections from the day’s experiences to previous learning, leading to inferences, associations, problem-solving and deeper-level learning.
- Emotion regulation. Those who don’t get enough sleep tend to be more anxious, irritable, and moody, and less able to manage their emotions. Well-rested people feel better. They’re more positive and energetic.
- Attention, impulse control, and concentration. Insufficient sleep leads to distractibility, impulsivity, and reduced ability to concentrate, sometimes to the point of mimicking symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.
- Good judgement depends on adequate sleep. Those who don’t get enough sleep tend to react to irrelevant factors with the same intensity as more important issues.
- Somewhat predictably, with impaired emotion regulation and judgement, children who don’t get enough sleep are more likely to present behavior problems.
- Physical health. Being well-rested is good for the immune system, helping to prevent and fight infections and many kinds of disease.
- Physical growth and repair. The pituitary gland releases growth hormone during sleep, which the body requires for growth, fat breakdown, and repair.
- Weight control. Insufficient sleep is associated with obesityand diabetes. Sleep modulates the neuroendocrine system and glucose metabolism.
By Dr Dona Matthews, Development Psychologist and author.