How Sleep Deprivation Is Connected To Aging

A good night sleep plays a critical role in many human vital functions including immune function, memory, learning, and metabolism. Sleep deprivation leads to tiredness which impacts a person’s judgment, problem-solving skills, and creativity. For years, studies have proved that chronic sleep deprivation leads to many medical problems. But did you know that your skin health is also related to proper sleep?

Research has proven the interconnection between sleep and skin health. A University Hospitals (UH) Case Medical Center study found that those who did not get sufficient sleep had increased signs of skin aging. Researchers found that those who didn’t get quality sleep exhibited more signs of skin aging including fine lines, uneven pigmentation and reduced skin elasticity. 

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How sleep is associated with a healthy skin

Sleeplessness can affect your skin’s natural beauty.

When you don’t get enough sleep, your body goes into panic mode, releasing loads of stress hormones like cortisol. When released in excess, cortisol actively breaks down collagen and hyaluronic acid. Collagen is responsible for the elasticity and structure of the skin. When collagen is broken down, the skin shows more noticeable signs of aging by becoming thinner and less firm.

Lack of sleep affects water balance.

Like all other organs, your skin is also an organ which needs water to stay healthy. Water detoxifies all the toxins and carries nutrients which are essential for the skin cells. During deep sleep, the body adjusts its overall hydration levels. Not getting enough sleep messes with your body’s water balance and leads to a dull, dry, and acne-prone complexion. Dehydration is a common cause of under-eye dark circles. When your body is not receiving the proper amount of water, the skin beneath your eyes begins to look dull and your eyes look sunken.

Inadequate sleep stimulates the aging process.

While you are sleeping the rise in growth hormones allows damaged skin cells to get repaired. Without the deeper phases of sleep, this won’t happen. This results in more noticeable signs of aging.

Poor sleep may worse immune-related skin problems.

Without a healthy immune system, our body would be open to attacks from bacteria, viruses, parasites, and more. When it comes to your immune health, sleep plays a vital role. During sleep, your body releases cytokines which help you sleep better and battle illness. Lack of sleep reduces the production of cytokines and thus they can’t fight infections and illnesses well. If your immune system is suppressed, your body will be more open to infection. Due to weak immunity, it’s much harder for the body to recover and treat bacteria deep within pores that result in skin breakouts, rashes, pigmentation, and irritation. It not only accelerates the aging process more often but also leads to outbreaks immune-related skin diseases such as psoriasis and eczema. 

Insufficient sleep contributes to weight gain.

Insufficient sleep promotes hunger and appetite. This is likely caused by the impact of sleep on two important hunger hormones ghrelin and leptin. Ghrelin is a hormone released in the stomach that signals hunger in the brain. Leptin is a hormone released from fat cells, it suppresses hunger and signals fullness in the brain. When you do not get adequate sleep, the body makes more ghrelin and less leptin, leaving you hungry and increasing your appetite. 

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David W | Published on Friday, November 14, 2018

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How to get a better night’s sleep?

Eat light at night but never go to bed on an empty stomach.

Eat more healthy foods such as fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, and whole grains. Avoid high-fat foods and caffeine. The best bedtime snack is one that has complex carbohydrates, medium-to-low protein, and some calcium. For instance, bananas, potatoes, and sweet potatoes help promote sleep because they contain carbs.

Drink plenty of water throughout the day, but not late at night.

Drinking water and healthy fluids are important to stay hydrated. Limit alcohol, try to have it three hours before bed. Take as many fluids as you can during the day, but limit intake at night as your sleep will be interrupted by frequent trips to the washroom.

Keep electronics out of the bedroom.

Light from electronics has the potential to disrupt sleep which will make it harder to get a full night sleep, in turn, making you less alert the next day. Put your phone away and turn off your TV about 30 minutes before you go to bed. The light from the screen tends to interfere with your body’s production of melatonin (the hormone that helps make us sleepy at bedtime) and the content you watch will only stimulate your brain and make it stay asleep.

Develop a habit of getting enough sleep every day.

You can take steps to build a regular habit to improve your sleep. First, make sure that you give yourself enough time to sleep. Try to sleep and get up at the same time every day, even on weekends or during vacations. This will help you to create a sleep-wake schedule and brings you a healthy sleep habit. Oversleeping on weekends can disrupt your sleep-wake rhythm. Also, set a bedtime that is early enough for you to get at least 7 hours of sleep. Don’t go to bed unless you are sleepy.

Make your bedroom quiet and relaxing.

Create a room that’s ideal for sleeping. Often, this means cool, dark and quiet. Exposure to light might make it more challenging to fall asleep. Your blinds should be drawn to keep light out. Make sure your bedroom is clutter-free and decorated with cool and calm colors that bring to mind a peaceful day near calm waters. The bed is often the focal point of the bedroom, and if you want a bedroom that feels peaceful, a cozy bed is a good way to make that happen.   

The Nuvanna mattress is the perfect balance of support and comfort. Its three-layer design cools, comforts and supports your body for the best sleep possible. The top layer consists of phase-change gel particles that absorb body heat and disperse it. The middle layer isolates motion and allows you and your partner to move freely without disturbing each other’s sleep. The bottom layer supports the entire body and thus prevent you from neck and back pain.

The process of aging cannot be reversed or put to an end, but poor sleep can boost up the appearance of the signs of aging. The health of your skin mirrors the health of your body. Prioritize your sleep from now on to get healthy and youthful skin. Following these tips and investing in a good mattress can help you prevent premature skin aging and boosting your overall skin health.

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