Recently updated on March 17th, 2020 at 03:03 pm
Sleep is more critical than ever with a global pandemic. People will need to stay in place and not leave their homes. To be prepared, make sure you have a good mattress for good sleep which leads go better health. The unexpected speed of transmission of the deadly Coronavirus has been generating headlines throughout the globe marking a sad beginning of the year 2020. Originating from a food market in Wuhan, China, this new virus has been spreading like wildfire since December 2019, infecting tens of thousands with a death toll of over 2000 to date. But despite such global panic and the yet undiscovered vaccine for the same, any person is unlikely to contract such a virus unless he/she gets in contact with a virus-infected person.
To restrict the possibility of contracting such a deadly disease, we should execute all possible measures, and one of the best ways to combat such a virus is by getting a good night’s sleep. Yes, you heard it right. Getting a deep and uninterrupted night’s sleep can minimize the possibility of being affected by Coronavirus.
Symptoms of COVID-19 And How Sleep Can Help
But before getting into the benefits of such an effective technique, it is necessary to know the probable symptoms associated with such a virus infestation. Doctors are learning new things about the virus every day, and it has been seen that people affected with COVID-19 may not show any symptoms initially. They may carry the virus for 2 days up to 2 weeks without producing any noticeable symptoms.
Some of the common symptoms associated with the COVID-19 observed to date include –
- Experiencing a cough that may get more severe with time.
- Feeling short of breath.
- Fever, which may gradually increase over time.
However, a lot is yet to be explored through further investigations.
How the Immune System Functions and benefits Sleep
The in-built defense mechanism of our body helps in combating various viruses and flu from damaging the normal functioning of the body. This system is responsible for executing three primary jobs which include –
- Identifying pathogens and disease-producing germs and removing them from the body. These may include parasites, fungi, viruses, and bacteria.
- Detecting and neutralizing external harmful substances before they can affect our bodies.
- Combating major changes within the body, such as the cancer cells.
The immune system gets down to work as soon as it detects any toxins or antigens or any other foreign substances in the body. Such a response leads the immune system to develop antibodies and cells that help in fighting the invader. Upon the production of such antibodies, the immune system will keep a record of the same and use it again if it runs into the same situation again in the future.
The Connection Between Sleep and the Immune System
Sleep for the human body can be portrayed as the halftime break while the immune system as the football coach. A good coach analyses the proceeding of the match during the halftime break and takes necessary actions to turn the match in favor of his team. Similarly, the immune system can combat any external threats by producing antibodies to counterattack virus-borne diseases. Without adequate sleep, your body will have a hard time assessing the best game plan and combating illness.
Regulating the Body Temperature
Another benefit that a good night’s sleep provides is regulating body temperature. This helps the body to maintain an optimal temperature level that can prevent any external disease-producing substances from adversely affecting the body.
Boosting T Cell Production
By fostering T-cell production, sleep helps in boosting the immune system. T cells are the white blood cells of the body that plays an essential role in the response of the immune system to viruses. The activation of T cells is important in determining how the system handles invaders with the T cells attacking and destroying the virus-borne cells before they invade the body’s immune system.
Research studies reveal that people who get a good night’s sleep report higher levels of T cell activation in comparison to those who don’t get sufficient sleep. Sleep deprivation adversely affects the ability of the T cells to respond to external threats and fight back against illness.
Improving the Response of the Immune System to COVID-19
The response time of the immune system gets greatly enhanced by getting a good night’s sleep. People who complete the four sleep cycles are able to support the release and production of cytokine, which is a multifaceted protein that helps the immune system to respond quickly to antigens.
Cytokines mainly help in
- Establishing cell-to-cell communication
- Directing the cells to proceed towards infections and counteracting issues.
The human body requires a complete night’s sleep to replenish the proteins and cells it requires to combat diseases like the Coronavirus. A lack of sleep hinders cytokine production, making it harder for the body to battle against viruses like the COVID-19.
Tips to Get the Best Sleep Possible
Now the most important question is, “How to get a good night’s sleep?” It is quite difficult for today’s generation to maintain work-life balance and getting adequate rest despite the excessive work pressure. You can develop a daily routine for yourself or follow various online sleep calculators to ensure at least 7.5 hours of daily night’s sleep. Also, make sure that you stay away from gadgets that emit blue light as it can prevent you from sleeping as soon as you hit the bed. Refrain from consuming any substance containing caffeine prior to bed, as it can affect your normal sleep routine. Stay well hydrated throughout the day but reduce your water consumption post evening so that you don’t visit the toilet once you go to sleep at night.
Keep Your Mattress Clean During the Coronavirus Outbreak
Having a hygienic mattress is critical during a pandemic but it makes sense to keep your mattress as clean as possible all the time. The best way to do this is with a mattress protector. A good mattress protector will keep any fluids and dust mites out of your mattress. If you become sick from the coronavirus, you’ll most likely be spending much more time in bed. Once the virus has run its course, you can simply wash the mattress protector along with the rest of your bedding to give you a fresh mattress.
The Bottom Line
For centuries we have known that sleep is a natural immune booster. So, getting a good night’s sleep consistently can help to improve our immune system and defend our system from any deadly diseases and viruses like the COVID-19. Modern researchers have helped to highlight the benefits of sleep in boosting the body’s immune system. However, this does not establish the fact that sleep is an all-cure for coronavirus. Till a vaccine for killing the deadly virus is developed, it is important to remember the fundamentals so that we can keep ourselves safe from the clutches of Coronavirus to the utmost extent possible.