Renew Sleep Solutions :: Can a Lack of Sleep Make You Sick?
Can a Lack of Sleep Make You Sick?
We’ve all heard plenty of old wives’ tales when it comes to avoiding or curing a seasonal cold or virus.
Well, when it comes to avoiding a cold or virus, it turns out that getting a good night’s rest happens to be a great idea.
Because so many of our bodily functions are bolstered or restored while we’re fast asleep, it makes sense that allowing our body to “heal” will go a long way in ensuring we’re at our healthy best during the day.
Also, recent studies have shown that when it comes to avoiding a cold or virus, the effects of a good night’s sleep on our immune system plays a major role.
When we’re fast asleep, the immune system releases proteins that are called cytokines. One of the functions of these proteins is to help promote a quality sleep, while another is to help to fight infection and inflammation and essentially help boost our immune systems.
Also, other essential cells and antibodies that help fight infection are also produced during our non-waking periods and a lack of sleep stalls these productions.
As a result, when that cold starts floating around the office or workplace, we’re more likely to catch it simply because our body‘s immune system isn’t working at its best.
Also, if we do catch a cold, flu, or other illness, it takes much longer for it to go away, simply because the antibodies we need to fight the infection or illness aren’t being produced at a high level.
This applies to a lack of sleep – or getting less than seven hours of sleep per night – but it also applies to a lack of quality sleep as well.
Sleep Apnea Impacts
Sleep apnea suffers are well aware that even if their eyes are closed for hours at a time, the sleep quality is dwindled to dangerously low levels.
Whether we realize it or not, our brains and bodies aren’t really “asleep” during the night with OSA, and instead, we are waking up multiple times due to a sudden lack of breath.
And just as our bodies can’t produce the essential cells, proteins, and antibodies we need when we’re wide awake, these essential processes also can’t be performed if we’re not going through a regular sleep cycle.
The good news is that when it comes to sleep apnea, diagnosis may be difficult to pinpoint at first, but treatment is fairly easy, cost effective and often covered by health insurance.
So if you seem always to catch whatever is going around – or suffer longer than most people when you get a cold or the flu – it might be a sign that something is wrong with your sleep schedule.
We Can Help
A quality night’s rest has a lot of bearing on how often and how long we get sick, so keep yourself healthy in more ways than one by ensuring that sleep apnea isn’t a problem.
By treating sleep apnea, you’re doing a world of good for your body, regardless of whether you are perfectly healthy, or if you are susceptible to a summer cold.