Lack of Sleep and Brain Function - The Reality of R&R

Posted by Ben Armstrong on

The alarm rings and you force your eyelids open. Through a swamp of grogginess and swirling emotions, you try and shake off the nausea and disorientation that you would usually associate with a mild hangover and get ready for work. However, as you prepare for the day ahead, you have to constantly stop to ask yourself seemingly-simple questions:

Where did I put my keys last night?

Did I get any of the work done that I was supposed to?

When did I go to sleep last night?

That last question is the one that really sticks. If any of this morning routine feels familiar to you, it’s likely that you’ve had a few sleep deprived days. The relationship between lack of sleep and brain function is one that his been discussed at great length by researchers in fields spanning neurology and psychology, and the resulting effects of sleep deprivation on the brain are more than just grogginess.

How Lack of Sleep and Brain Function Relate

Researchers, such as Dr. Itzhak Fried (a professor of neurosurgery), have found that sleep deprivation leads to neurons being unable to function correctly. This leads to changes in how we perceive the world around us. This can lead to bouts of dramatic emotional overreactions to negative experiences. The inability to adequately react to bad situations is considered to be one of the factors linking sleep deprivation to stress and anxiety.

However, our emotions aren’t the only thing that stands to lose out in the relationship between lack of sleep and brain function. Studies have shown that a lack of sleep can also cause:

• Mental Lapses (Impacting Perception and Memory)

• An Inability to Hold Concentration

• Difficulty in Categorising Information and External Stimuli

It has also been suggested that some areas of the brain will switch off during sleep deprivation. To be more specific, there are areas of the brain that will exhibit the same activity in a sleepless person as they will a person that is currently sleeping. This goes quite a long way to explaining why it’s difficult for tired people to properly perceive the world around them.

How to Reclaim Your Sleep

As we’ve discussed in the past, your sleep cycle is a vital component of your daily health (see our article on circadian rhythm). There are a wide variety of different factors that can cause your sleep cycle to become unhealthy, and therefore, there are many things that can be done to reclaim it.

For example, a lot of sleep issues start with bedding. If you are trying to fall asleep on a mattress that is uncomfortable, worn out, or simply not suited to your body, you aren’t going to be able to reap all of the benefits sleep should provide. At Nicklor, we offer several different memory foam mattress options to suit practically any sleeper. Click here to see our full range.

If you’d like more tips on how to create a more rest-ready you, we have an article on that too!


Inevitably, we’re all going to experience situations that take us away from our healthy sleep patterns, and we’re going to have days of grogginess. However, if this is a regular occurrence, it can cause a wide variety of issues and shouldn’t be ignored. Visit your local GP today if you feel that you are unable to sleep. If you’re looking to upgrade your sleep setup, contact the mattress experts at Nicklor today to start your journey toward better sleep.

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