9 Interesting Ways How Your Sleep Quality Affects Your Health

9 Interesting Ways How Your Sleep Quality Affects Your Health

Just like a nutritious diet and physical activity, sleep too is key to good health. Experts recommend getting 7 to 9 years of sleep, depending on your age. Aside from making you feel well-rested, sleep also allows for tissue repair and brain processing. While many activities like work and family can demand your time, it’s never a good idea to sacrifice your sleeping hours. Take a look at ways your sleep affects your health.

1- Depression

Quality sleep allows you to rest your mind and body so that you wake up feeling refreshed and ready to be productive. Research has found there is a relationship between sleep and depression. Disrupted sleep or sleep deprivation can cause or exacerbate symptoms of depression. Sleep is like food for your brain. It allows the brain to form new pathways which help you solve problems, learn, make decisions, and pay attention. After quality sleep, you can concentrate, think clearly and handle your emotions better.

2- Performance and Productivity

The lack of sleep will make you feel lethargic, forgetful, and drowsy. In fact, without proper sleep, you’ll be unlikely to do tasks, leading to a non-productive day. You won’t feel motivated to do anything, which allows tasks to pile up and give you stress down the line. Quality sleep allows you to think quickly and perform your tasks effectively. It also reduces mood swings and allows you to cope healthily with upsetting situations.

3- Immune System

When sleeping, the immune system produces cytokines and antibodies that fight viruses and bacteria, keeping you healthy. Certain cytokines allow you to sleep better, making the immune system more efficient in fighting infections. When you don’t get quality sleep, you hinder the immune system from doing its work. If you can’t fall asleep quickly, try to find the causes and address them. The most common is the lack of a quality mattress which causes discomfort at night. Get a quality mattress that allows proper spine alignment and comfort.

4- Overweight and Obesity

Getting quality sleep helps you maintain a healthy weight. When you don’t sleep, your body produces a hormone called ghrelin which makes you hungry. As a result, you’ll eat more food leading to excess weight. Talk to your doctor if you’re exhausted yet can’t fall asleep at night. They can help or refer you to a specialist for proper help.

5- Anxiety

Anxiety is another mental health condition affected by sleep or the lack of it. Although anxiety can cause a lack of sleep, the lack of sleep can also worsen the symptoms of anxiety. Consider low movements activities like tai chi and yoga, which have been known to lessen anxiety symptoms and increase sleep quality.

6- Diabetes

Lack of enough sleep makes the body produce less insulin, and the cells become less sensitive to insulin. With time, you’ll have high blood sugar levels, which can lead to type 2 diabetes. People who don’t get enough sleep have a high chance of developing this condition. Consult with a healthcare provider if you’re having trouble sleeping. They’ll analyze the causes and help keep your blood sugar levels stable.

7- High Blood Pressure and Heart Disease

Getting quality sleep is good for your heart. As you sleep, your body is regulating stress hormones. Without sleep, these hormones remain high, contributing to high blood pressure. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has also found that poor sleep leads to high-stress levels and less motivation.

8- Memory

You have heard students say they would like to catch a nap before studying. That’s because sleep can boost your memory and help you learn easily. Sleep kills fatigue allowing your mind to grasp concepts easily and retain that information.

9- Inflammation

The lack of quality sleep affects your body’s inflammation levels. Chronic inflammation increases the risk of cancer and cardiovascular diseases. People who don’t get enough sleep are at higher risk of developing chronic inflammation. If not addressed, inflammation damages healthy cells, organs, and tissues leading to internal scarring. Ultimately, this can lead to life-threatening conditions like type 2 diabetes and cancer.

As much as you may be leading a busy life, always make time for sleep to promote your health. At the same time, find solutions that can help you sleep better, such as a comfortable mattress, avoiding caffeine before bed, and exercising.