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The relation between Sleep and Heart problems
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The relation between Sleep and Heart problems

Not getting enough hours of sleep at night can make you feel tired throughout the day, but when it becomes a regular habit, it can put you at an increased risk of developing such serious health issues. A proper sleep cycle is an important part of a healthy lifestyle and just like we prioritize staying active and eating a balanced diet, you also need to focus on getting enough sleep. Although there are several different ways in which lack of sleep can affect your body, in this blog, we have specifically highlighted its impact on our cardiovascular health, with the help of the best cardiologist in Gurugram.

Importance of sleep

Generally, adults need about 7 hours of sleep, every night, to support healthy organ function and physical well-being. Getting a good night’s sleep is extremely important for optimal body function because it helps our body to recover and recharge. As per the experts specialising in cardiac surgery in Gurugram, getting proper sleep may help to alleviate the risks of cardiovascular damage. Wondering how? Let's try to understand

Our sleep comprises several different stages which are broadly classified as REM (Rapid Eye Movement) speel and NREM (Non-Rapid Eye Movement) sleep. During NREM, a person falls asleep and gradually moves into a deep sleep. As this happens our heart rate slows down, blood pressure decreases and breathing becomes more stable. This helps to reduce any strain or stress from our cardiovascular system and helps it to heal. When we do not get enough sleep, the deep stages of NREM do not last long, giving our heart very little to no time to heal. As this happens, our cardiovascular health is severely compromised.

Heart problems linked with lack of sleep

We often compromise our sleep hours for work, frequent night outs, parties, late-night movies or just to scroll the internet, without realizing how it is going to affect us in the long run. Here are some of the most common issues linked to lack of sleep:-

High blood pressure - It is a fact that when we are asleep, our blood pressure levels drop by nearly 10 to 20 per cent. Commonly referred to as nocturnal dipping, it plays a significant role in determining our cardiovascular health. When you are not getting enough sleep due to any reason, there’s no dipping, i.e. your blood pressure will stay the same. If this continues to happen daily, it can result in hypertension or high blood pressure. Surprisingly, night -time blood pressure has been found to have a deeper connection with heart problems as compared to daytime blood pressure. The problem is most commonly seen in middle-aged adults, people with stressful, late-night jobs and people with pre-existing hypertension risk factors

Coronary heart disease - CAD happens to be one of the leading causes of death worldwide. It is marked by restricted flow of blood via the coronary artery due to the accumulation of plaque, which tends to get hard over time and leads to severe obstruction. This is commonly referred to as atherosclerosis. Research has shown that lack of sleep can make you more susceptible to the problem. This happens because sleep deprivation triggers chronic inflammation. As this happens, the white blood cells produced by our immune system start accumulating in the arteries. Hypertension caused by sleep deprivation can also contribute to the same.

Heart failure - When someone is having heart failure, it means that their heart is not pumping enough blood to support the body’s needs. An observational study was once conducted, in which it was found that there is a deep link between sleep problems and heart failure. Adults who did not get 7 hours of sleep at night were found to be more susceptible to the problem. Fragmented or insufficient sleep puts you at risk of developing hypertension, which puts an additional strain on your heart muscles, causing them to wear out in the long run. Not only this, but hypertension can also lead to the thickening of the heart muscles resulting in the enlargement of the heart, which again is a cause of heart failure.

To know more about how lack of sleep can affect your heart, consult the experts from the best hospital in Gurugram today.

Dr. D.K. Jhamb, Director & Head of the Department

Interventional Cardiology

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