Sleep Debt: How To Make Up For Lost Sleep & Why It Matters

By Sarah Ellis, March 14, 2020

Think of your body like a bank, and each night you’re depositing a set amount of money into it. If you miss your “payment” one night, you’ll owe more money the next night to make up for it. Sleep deprivation accumulates in this way. “Sleep is indeed like a bank account, and each night one gets less than the recommended amount counts as a draw on the funds,” explains Alex Dimitriu, M.D., a double board-certified doctor specializing in psychiatry and sleep medicine. “For someone well rested, missing one hour of sleep on one night often has quite a minimal impact. Over time, however, the missed hours begin to add up.”

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