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Apr 20, 2017 10:53 AM EDT

Poor sleeping habits are not only having a negative impact on one's health - it may also be costing professionals their jobs. It is a productivity killer that can hinder one's career goals.

Harvard Medical School's Division of Sleep Medicine noted that the short-term productivity gains from skipping sleep to work are negated by the damaging effects it has on one's mood, ability to focus and access to higher-level brain functions. The negative effects of sleep deprivation are so massive that drunk people outperform individuals who lack sleep.

In a post on LinkedIn, Dr. Travis Bradberry, award-winning coauthor of "Emotional Intelligence 2.0" and co-founder of consultancy firm TalentSmart, wrote that new research from the University of Rochester showed the first direct evidence of how sleep affects brain cells. The study found that when people sleep, their brains remove toxic proteins from its neurons which are by-products of neural activity when one is awake.

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Sleep is important because it is the only way for the brain to remove these toxic proteins. When an individual does not get enough sleep, these proteins remain in the brain cells and impair one's ability to process information and solve problems. It also kills creativity and increases stress levels and emotional reactivity.

Sleep deprivation leads to several serious health problems such as heart attack, stroke, type 2 diabetes and obesity. People who lack sleep are more stressed since their bodies overproduce cortisol, known as the stress hormone.

Excess cortisol has a lot of negative health effects that affects the immune system. It also makes one look older as it breaks down skin collagen, which keeps skin smooth and elastic.

Majority of American workers get less than six hours of sleep each night. This cost businesses with over $63 million every year due to lost productivity.

The Daily Herald shared eight tips on how to get better sleep. It includes establishing better sleep routines, exercising as well as unplugging technology.

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