World Sleep Day: Can lack of sleep affect your fertility? Here’s what you must know
It’s World Sleep Day, ladies! Over the years, our lifestyles have radically changed. The advent of technology and digitization, while making our lives easier and more convenient, has taken a toll on several other aspects of our life, including sleep. Constantly staying digitally connected, excessive stress, increased consumption of junk food, etc, can impact our sleep quality and cycle. Chances are, we’ve all experienced nights when sleep is elusive. Aside from fatigue, irritability, inability to focus, obesity, etc., the lack of sleep can be detrimental to your fertility.
Over 30 percent of Indians struggle with lack of sleep. And for those trying to conceive, this can pose a real challenge and sabotage their efforts. Your overall health, mood, hormones, and fertility are all impacted by the quality and quantity of your daily sleep. But how?
Ways in which lack of sleep can affect fertility
1. Disrupted hormone production
One of the most critical aspects that are affected if you don’t get enough sleep is hormone production. Lack of sufficient sleep can result in insufficient production of certain reproductive hormones that enhance fertility. Being sleep-deprived can urge your body to produce more stress hormones, which can adversely impact fertility levels.
For women, stress hormones can cause delays in their menstrual cycles, making it a challenge to conceive. The hormonal imbalance can also cause decreased libido. The mood swings and fatigue due to lack of sleep can also add to your woes by affecting your relationship and intimacy with your partner.
2. Strike a balance
Our habit of staying digitally connected and surrounded by gadgets takes a heavy toll on our mental and physical well-being. The blue light emitted by devices suppresses melatonin production in the body, a key hormone that enables us to get sound sleep, while protecting the eggs during ovulation. Without melatonin, we’re left with inadequate sleep, and the eggs produced by women’s bodies don’t receive any sort of protection, reducing their fertility.
Additionally, striking a healthy work-life balance is another integral factor that plays a role in determining/affecting fertility. Without a healthy balance, especially in the current scenario, the body and mind are subject to immense stress, burnout, and exhaustion, reducing your fertility. For people working night shifts, fertility can be further impacted as the body’s usual sleep cycle is disrupted.
3. Practicing a holistic approach
A majority of the reasons for the lack of sleep – and quality sleep especially – are linked to the way we lead our lives today. These can be easily fixed through simple lifestyle changes. Ensuring you switch off your gadgets and disconnect at least 30 minutes to an hour before bed, getting at least 7-8 hours of sleep, developing a healthy work-life balance, sticking to a healthy diet, following an exercise regimen, and spending me time, can go a long way in helping you fall asleep and improve your fertility rate.