We know lack of sleep can contribute to weight gain, increase risk of type 2 diabetes and more. Now, a new study reports that too little sleep may kill brain cells‘at least in mice. The study, published in the Journal of Neuroscience, is the first to show that sleep loss damages a type of brain cell called locus ceruleus (LC) neurons, leading to irreversible brain cell damage.
So how little sleep is too little? According to a Forbes.com article, the study mice were limited to four or five hours of sleep per 24-hour time period. After three days of so little sleep "the mice experienced a 25 percent loss of LCs in a particular section of the brain stem." Scary stuff considering many people, such as new moms and emergency room personnel, may be limited to four or five hours of sleep per night for several consecutive nights.
How many hours do you sleep each night? Are you worried about the effects of long term sleep deprivation?