With COVID-19 on everyone’s minds, it’s important to know what factors play a role in your immune system. Sleep is one of the biggest factors that can make or break your immune system. Without an adequate amount of sleep, your immune system can suffer. Learn how sleep affects your immune system and what you can do to get a better night of sleep.
How Sleep Affects Your Immune System
A lot happens when you sleep at night. Your body repairs cells releases molecules like proteins and hormones and it restores energy. Your nerve cells reorganize and communicate to support healthy brain function. Your brain also gets rid of toxic waste and stores new information. Lastly, your immune system recharges.
When you sleep at night, your body creates and releases cytokines – a protein type that targets inflammation and infection, or an immune response. If you don’t sleep well or enough, your body won’t create or release as many cytokines which can affect your body’s immune response. Not sleeping enough will make it harder for your body to fight off germs or an infection. If you want to ensure your immune system performs as well as possible, getting a good night of sleep is essential.
How to Get a Better Night of Sleep
To help boost your immune system, make sure you sleep the recommended amount. Most adults need between 7 and 9 hours of sleep per night to function best. To get a better night of sleep to follow these tips:
- Reduce blue light exposure 2 hours before bedtime
- Don’t consume caffeine within 6 hours of bedtime
- Stick to a consistent sleep schedule
- Take melatonin to help you fall asleep
- Don’t drink alcohol
- Optimize your sleep environment
- Relax before bedtime
- Exercise regularly – but not at night
- Don’t drink too much water before bed
- Treat your sleep disorder
If you wake up feeling tired like you didn’t sleep a wink, you might likely have a sleep disorder. If your sleep partner complains that you snore, you may have sleep apnea. If you suffer from sleep apnea, you won’t get a good night of sleep unless you treat it. By finding the right sleep apnea treatment for you and with consistent use, you can get the good night of sleep you deserve and enhance your immune system.
At Firouzian Dentistry, we treat all different types of sleep disorders with oral appliances. If you think you might have a sleep disorder and would like to get a better night of sleep, please contact us so we can refer you to have a sleep test. Once we receive your diagnosis, we can recommend the right oral appliance for you. Contact our Columbus, OH dental office today to schedule an appointment.