If you think you need only six hours of sleep a night, be aware of the following sleep-deprivation hazards you could face over the
Impaired Psychological Performance
Impaired Psychomotor Functioning
» Reaction time
» Reduced capacity for strenuous physical activity and performance
Impaired Physiological Functioning
» Hypoxia, or loss of oxygen
» Heart rate changes
» Altered hormone levels
» Suppression of immune function
The average person wakes up briefly 5-8 times a night, while some victims of severe sleep apnea - one of 83 different sleep
disorders known to science - wake up as often as 480 times a night. Common sleep disorders can affect your zzz's:
Insomnia Sleep loss from taking too long to fall asleep, waking up too often during the night and waking too early in the
morning. Numerous causes include anxiety, depression, poor sleep habits, living in noisy surroundings, dependency on drugs
or alcohol, restless leg syndrome, sleep apnea, arthritis, ulcers and other illnesses. Approximately 43% of adults are affected
a few nights a week or more by at least one symptom of insomnia.
Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS). Unpleasant chronic discomfort from sensations that include muscle twitching and aching in
the legs (sometimes arms). Causes uncontrollable leg jerks ranging from mild to severe that occur while lying in bed trying
to drift off to sleep. Relief comes only from getting up and walking. Affects 5% of the population.
Narcolepsy Uncontrollable sleepiness characterized by falling asleep at inappropriate times during the day and night.
Sometimes accompanied by hypnagogic (drowsiness-related) hallucinations or complete body paralysis lasting several minutes
before tone returns to the muscles. Affects approximately 300,000 Americans.
Bruxism A syndrome characterized by grinding teeth during sleep. Often accompanied by blood-vessel constriction and an
accelerated pulse rate. Millions of sleepers - an estimated one in seven - chomp and gnash their teeth during the night.
Sleep Apnea Based on Greek words that translate as "no breath," sufferers actually stop breathing repeatedly during the
night alternating nonbreathing sleep periods with many brief breathing awake periods, making continuous sleep impossible.
The exhausting cycle is punctuated by heavy snoring, a feeling of suffocation and repeated arousals that the person may not
even be aware of as he or she chokes and gasps for air. Affects more than 12 million people.