Have you been getting your beauty sleep?
There’s no denying that getting a full night’s rest can impact our appearance and the way we feel. Looking and feeling refreshed after a full 8 hours of sleep is a key factor in health and quality of life.
So, why is sleep so important? Essentially, it gives our body the chance to recover and rebuild from damage that occurs throughout the day.
What Does Your Body Do During Sleep?
Your body does some pretty amazing things throughout the night. These nightly tasks are important for both your mental and physical health.
- Skin Repair: There are plenty of physical changes that occur during REM sleep, or rapid eye movement sleep. One change in particular is related to skin vitality and elasticity. During REM sleep, cellular repair is at its peak, which means that your body is also reconstructing collagen and elastin.
- Forget Pointless Information: Our brains stay very active throughout the night, especially during deep REM sleep. During this time, our brain is filtering through information to keep and toss away. Some researchers also theorize that we clear toxins that cause cognitive problems like Alzheimer’s disease.
- Fight Off Disease: The immune system is also functioning at its all-time high while you sleep. Researchers found that participants who received flu shots but didn’t sleep the next night didn’t create the antibodies needed to protect against the flu. Getting enough sleep is crucial to fighting off infection and disease because that is when the immune system increases production of disease-fighting agents.
- Tissue Growth and Repair: Cellular repair and growth occurs throughout the body while you sleep. This occurs because the body increases production of different growth hormones that are important throughout our entire lives, and are especially important during developmental years. For example, these hormones are important for building muscle after a tough workout or healing any wounds.
- Regulate Hunger Hormones: Individuals who are chronically sleep deprived will typically face more issues with weight gain than individuals who get enough sleep. Researchers believe that weight gain occurs because lack of sleep can disrupt the balance between two hormones related to hunger — ghrelin and leptin. An increase in appetite also occurs in relation to the need for more calories due to extended wakefulness.
Sleep Deprivation and Sleep Apnea
Given all the important things your body does during sleep, it’s easy to understand how a lack of sleep can quickly cause your health to deteriorate.
Sleep apnea is one particular cause of sleep deprivation that can be especially deadly. According to the American Sleep Apnea Association, nearly 22 million Americans suffer from this common sleep disorder. Sleep apnea is a life-shortening disease that is characterized by pauses in breathing throughout the night.
Some of the symptoms of sleep apnea include morning headaches, daytime sleepiness, loud snoring, changes in mood, and more. The real danger of sleep apnea is the fact that so many people don’t know they have it. Allowing this disorder to continue without treatment significantly increases your risk for several health complications.
Treat Sleep Apnea and Get a Full Night’s Sleep
The good news is that treating sleep apnea can be a simple process. Here at North Texas Sleep Solutions, we have treated many patients’ sleep apnea with the help of an oral appliance. Using an oral appliance will help to shift the jaw and to avoid blocking your airway while you sleep.
These oral devices are comfortable, affordable, and effective! To learn more about how you can reclaim your full night’s sleep, contact our office today to schedule your no-obligation consultation with Dr. Rebecca Lauck.