Sleep deprivation can impair your ability to successfully complete complex tasks, a new study reports.
A good night’s sleep is important to maintaining both physical and cognitive health. Our bodies know this instinctively, and researchers have proved many times that this is true.
Several studies have already shown that sleep protects your vascular health, maintains brain health and strengthens your immune system.
Sleep Deprivation: Effects On Performing Complex Tasks
Michigan State researchers tested the effects of sleep deprivation on performing complex tasks.
Investigators divided 138 participants into two groups; Group A and Group B
On Day-1, both groups were given two tasks. The first one measured their reaction time to a particular stimulus. The second task required the completion of a difficult task even with repeated interruptions.
Group A: Stayed in the University lab all night and had no sleep.
Group B: Went home to sleep.
On Day-2, each participant had to repeat these tasks to see how their performance compared with that of the previous evening. The researchers found that Group A, who were sleep deprived did very poorly on the complex task.
Indeed, the results showed that Group A, the sleep deprived group made double and triple the number of errors on the complex task compared to Group B.
Therefore, sleep deprived individuals need to be cautious. They won’t even realize they’re making mistakes. For example, driving a car or using machinery can be a huge (fatal) problem if the operator is sleep deprived. Higher level cognitive abilities are significantly impaired.