Sleep Your Way To Better Skin 0

The Science of Sleep graphic

Sleep. We all love it… but are we getting enough of it?

You have probably heard that, ideally, you should be getting about 8 hours of sleep per night. Unfortunately, our busy schedules don’t always agree.

The nervous system is composed of both the sympathetic system and the parasympathetic system. The sympathetic system is in charge during our waking hours, but it’s the parasympathetic system that runs the show while we sleep and allows your body to repair itself on the cellular level.

While we are sleeping, blood flow shifts to the skin meaning the skin is receiving more oxygen thus allowing repair mechanisms to kick into gear. These repair mechanisms a.) deliver amino acids to the skin allowing for collagen synthesis, and b.) drain many of the toxins that were accumulated throughout the day.

Simply stated, during sleep our skin isn’t under attack from the elements. This makes it the perfect time for some TLC.

So what happens if you are not getting enough sleep?

Without enough rest, your body does not have the opportunity to repair and restore itself. You may begin to retain more water because you are not giving your kidneys adequate time to flush this excess fluid. In turn, you may appear puffy, especially around the eye area. Too little sleep can also spark inflammatory responses triggering disorders such as eczema, psoriasis, and other not-so-nice skin conditions.

Furthermore, chronic sleep deprivation compromises the immune system and has a negative impact on more than your outward appearance. It can seriously increase your risk of other, more serious diseases.

What can you do about it? Try to make sleep a priority, a non-negotiable as you would with going to work, picking the kids up from school, eating, breathing. Getting a proper night’s rest is so crucial to your health. Do your best to get 7-8 hours a night, budget your time accordingly, and reap the beautiful benefits of a good night’s sleep.

For more information about sleep and the impact it has on your health please visit the National Sleep Foundation.