Investigating sleep problems and how they can affect the body is becoming an increasing area of interest and study in health care. There are many published studies on how the human body reacts to lack of sleep. Several articles on this website deal with sleep issues. However, scientists have now discovered more about how the lack of sleep can affect the body, and in addition, how the side effects of vaccinations and medications can adversely affect sleep.
History of Flu Vaccination Affecting Sleep
Studies in Europe and Scandinavia have concluded the possibility that the H1N1 “swine flu” vaccine may increase the rate of narcolepsy. The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDE) concluded that the data from Finland and Sweden was correct and the risk of narcolepsy in children and teenagers led to a risk of 1:20,000. This strain of flu virus may have run its course, but authorities have pondered whether this type of vaccine should be used against other flu strains in the future.
There are numerous medications that can adversely affect your sleep. If you are taking medications and have sleep issues, discuss the possibility of your prescription contributing to your sleep problems.
Disrupted Sleep as a Medication Side Effect
Many necessary medications for your well being may include as one of their side effects an alteration or disruption of your sleep. Unfortunately, this lack of sleep side effect can contribute to other physical problems in the body. Some frequently prescribed medications that may affect your sleep pattern include:
- Benzodiazepines – Paxal and Xanax
- Tricyclic Antidepressants – Amitriptyline (Elavil), Doxepin and Nortriptlyine (Aventyl)
- Beta Blockers – Propranolol and Metoprolol
- Paroxetine Hydrochloride – Paxil
This is not a complete list of medications that may affect sleep. Consultation with your primary care physician is suggested if you have any questions about any of the effects that medications may have with your sleep issues.
Lack of Sleep Affects Your Genes
Research has discovered that as little as 1 week of disrupted sleep can adversely affect your body’s genes. The research outlines how poor sleep results in abnormal body system functioning. The study goes on to report that getting fewer than 6 hours of sleep per night may deactivate the genes that are key to the body’s repair and maintenance of tissues and organ system function. Genes supply proteins that help in repair of the damaged tissue. Researchers found that only after one week of sleep loss some of the genes discontinued working! An interesting study by a University in Great Britain found that volunteers who received less than 6 hours of sleep versus those that received nearly 10 hours over a one week period of time had altered function in 711 genes. These genes affect our metabolism, immunity, inflammation in the body and how we handle stress. Thankfully, they concluded that a return to getting 8 hours of sleep will also restore the function of the genes.
Chronic sleep deprivation is dangerous to your overall health. Make an effort to put sleep in your “top priorities” category.
The doctors at Coon Rapids Chiropractic Office have experience in providing you with suggestions to improve your sleeping habits.