How getting Sick could be tied to your lack of Sleep

lack of sleep keeping you sick

lack of sleep keeping you sickServing patients of Erwin, Jonesborough, and Greeneville TN

Everyone gets sick at some point. However, if you just can’t seem to get well, or find yourself going from one bout of illness to another repeatedly, then your health issues could be stemming from a shortage of quality sleep. Your sleep apnea dentists at Tusculum Dental Care are here to explain how a lack of good sleep can lead to more frequent illnesses.

You need quality rest to keep your immune system functioning at its peak

When you sleep, your body generates proteins that help protect against inflammation and stress. These proteins also serve as a defense mechanism to neutralize any viruses or illnesses that you become exposed to during your daily life. Everyone experiences the occasional night of restless sleep, but when you consistently fail to get the right amount of sleep, the production of these proteins diminishes, and your immune system becomes compromised. This means you are more susceptible to succumbing to diseases, viruses, and infections.

How much sleep should you get per night? The typical recommendation is seven hours

That’s the advised amount of sleep for most adults, as suggested by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. However, quality is more important than quantity regarding sleep amounts. That means that five to six hours of deep, restful sleep is better for you than eight or nine hours of sleep where you are waking up multiple times during the night.

The quality of your sleep can be impacted by your environment

If you have trouble getting to sleep or staying asleep, make some changes to your sleeping area by making it comfortable, dark, and cool. The recommended temperature should be between 60 and 67 degrees. Minimize distractions by curtailing screen time at least 30 minutes before bedtime and engaging in some sort of restful activity instead before going to sleep. Those who struggle with sleep also should try to maintain a consistent bedtime seven days a week, and moderate their consumption of alcohol and caffeine.

Sometimes, sleep loss is caused by a breathing disorder like obstructive sleep apnea

The American Sleep Association estimates that 50 to 70 million adults in the United States suffer from a sleep disorder of some sort. This category of ailments includes sleep apnea, which takes place when breathing becomes more difficult or stops altogether during sleep. Each time one of these sleep apnea attacks happens, your brain sends signals to the body that airflow has been cut off. Your brain comes out of sleep—although you may never consciously awaken—so that breathing resumes. Individuals living with severe, untreated sleep apnea may experience these blockages hundreds of times per night, which is no wonder why you wouldn’t feel rested after “sleeping” 8 hours a night!

Diagnosing sleep apnea in Greeneville

If you are living with sleep apnea, this is a serious medical problem. It will not go away on its own. The only way to resolve the problem, and get the deep, restful sleep that you need, is to have this sleep breathing disorder detected and treated by a qualified medical professional like the sleep apnea dentists at Tusculum Dental Care. Dr. Craig Shepherd and Dr. Nathaniel Renner have specialized training to treat sleep apnea by addressing the root cause—the problem affecting the airway. Using either an airway evaluation or a sleep study, our dentists can identify if there is an airway problem leading to sleep apnea, and then provide treatment through oral appliance therapy. If you have been living with sleep loss, you owe it to yourself to be screened for sleep apnea. Call our office at (423) 639-7575 to schedule an evaluation today.

Tusculum Dental Care is proud to serve patients in the areas of Greeneville, Jonesborough, and Erwin, Tennessee.