Why Your Heart Needs a Good Night Sleep

Why Your Heart Needs a Good Night Sleep

Most people have heard the old adage that you need eight hours of sleep per night. And while getting plenty of sleep can sure help you feel rested and rejuvenated the next day—new research has discovered that getting plenty of sleep isn’t just good for your mood or your mind; it is also good for your heart.

Researchers are saying that you need a minimum of six hours of sleep per night in order to help your heart stay healthy. This study looked into the impact that a chronic lack of sleep (and poor sleep quality) can have on the heart and its findings were astonishing.

According to the reports, poor sleep patterns can cause an increase in the fatty plaque accumulating around the arteries. This is known as atherosclerosis. This condition is known to increase the chances of heart attack and heart disease.

Heart disease is a very serious condition and is one of the leading causes of death among Americans today. And while many people know that medication, a healthy diet and exercise are all great ways to prevent the onset of heart disease, experts now want people to add sleep to the list of heart healthy-activities they can do to combat this disease.

Unfortunately, so many people today are faced with busy and demanding schedules that prevent them from getting the sleep that they need. While some may think that this lack of sleep is nothing that a good cup of coffee can’t fix, the effects can be much more serious than most people ever assumed.

It is important to note that while lack of sleep can do some serious damage to the heart and the arteries, too much sleep can have just as bad of an impact. In fact, studies found that women who sleep for more than eight hours a night also have an increased risk of this type of fatty plaque accumulation.

Looking to make sure that your heart stays healthy? Here are some heart-healthy tips for a great night sleep.

  • Try to get more than 6 hours but less than 8 hours of sleep per night. Set an alarm, and make sure that you do your best to stick to a schedule.
  • Pay attention to sleep quality, “poor quality” sleep, which includes frequent awakenings or difficulty getting to sleep also increases your chances of getting atherosclerosis.
  • Getting to sleep fast can also help with your sleep quality—so set a pre-bed routine before falling asleep and avoid blue light (cell phones and television) right before bed to help you get to sleep quicker and stay asleep longer.

These tips will all help you with your quality of sleep and help you make sure you are engaging in heart-healthy sleep that will only benefit you and your health moving forward.

Here at Continuum Internal Medicine, we want to make sure that you are always doing everything you can to take care of your heart. If you have questions about your heart health or if you want to learn about more ways to take care of your heart—call Continuum Internal Medicine at 817-617-8650.

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