Getting Enough ZZZs?

Northwestern Medicine
Health and Wellness October 30, 2012
Male sleeping at his office deskSleep is a necessity and paramount for good health, yet for most Americans it has become a luxury. Nearly 30 percent of us get less than six hours a night even while experts agree that adults require seven to nine hours. We are a nation of sleep deprived individuals, but few prioritize sleep and many fail to recognize the important role it plays in our overall health. According to the National Sleep Foundation,* shortened sleep duration can lead to serious health consequences:

  • Increased risk of motor vehicle accidents
  • Research shows that sleep deprived individuals eat more unhealthy foods and are more likely to be obese
  • Heightened risk of diabetes and heart disease
  • Increased risk for psychiatric conditions including depression and substance abuse
  • Decreased ability to pay attention, react to signals or remember new information

The good news is that we all have the ability to get our sleep back on track, once we recognize the need for improvement. Dr. Phyllis Zee, director of Northwestern Medicine Sleep Disorders Center, spoke with the Chicago Tribune about America’s sleep deficit and what we can do to fix it. Check out her Q&A

If you think you have a sleep disorder or need help getting your sleep habits in order, the Sleep Disorders Center can help. 
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