During a time of crisis, it’s easy to put daily tasks on the backburner. Putting on pants and doing the dishes have never felt harder but getting enough sleep must remain a priority. Quality sleep is essential all the time, but especially during a pandemic. Here’s why getting a good night’s sleep should be the first step when protecting your health and your immune system.
Sleep and Your Immune System
Now more than ever, people across the world are doing everything they can to boost their immunity. Believe it or not, your sleep affects your immune system and vice versa. And you’ve probably noticed how getting enough sleep is essential to your overall health:
- When you’re not feeling well, your body naturally tries to fight off sickness by resting and recuperating.
- Similarly, if you haven’t provided your body with enough R&R, you’re more susceptible to getting sick.
Research proves long-term sleep loss, or excessive sleep debt, suppresses your immune system, making you more vulnerable to infections. So why not take the extra preventative step by catching a few more Zzz’s tonight? Your health and wellness depend on it.
Sleep & Stress
Getting enough sleep not only helps keep infections at bay—it’s also an incredible stress-relieving tool. While our current circumstance may have us feeling overwhelmed and uncertain, quality sleep gives us the power to lower our stress levels, reduce our anxiety and maintain a healthy heart rate. Not to mention, it’s free. If you’re finding it hard to cope with all that’s going on, remember you can always take a nap.
According to the National Sleep Foundation, naps kept under 30 minutes offer the best benefits. In the time it takes to watch a normal TV program, you could help yourself decrease stress, increase your alertness and avoid burnout. During a pandemic, our focus is primarily on our physical health, however, don’t forget about your mental and emotional wellbeing. Quality rest (in whatever form—naps, meditation, REM sleep) is crucial for maintaining peace of mind during a time like this.
Prioritize Good Nights for Better Days
With so many things out of your control, getting enough sleep is an achievable goal. While sleep alone may not prevent sickness or infection, practicing good sleep hygiene can strengthen your immune systems and keep your stress levels in check. Rest assured knowing you’re doing what you can to stay healthy by giving yourself a great night of sleep.