Allergies and the Viscous Cycle
It is bad enough tossing and turning all night with itchy eyes, sneezing and blocked noses, then you have to battle the next day run-down, flat, fatigued and lethargic from a poor night’s sleep. Allergies can ruin a sleep and cause a viscous cycle to take place.
What Causes Allergies
When allergies occur seasonally it is usually caused by airborne particles from trees, grass or outdoor mould. Causes of year-round allergies can be indoor mould, dust mites in bedding, mattresses, and carpet. Allergies cause the nasal passages to swell meaning there’s less room for air to pass freely, making breathing difficult. At night when you are lying down it makes breathing even more difficult.
The Serious Side of Allergies
Allergies may include dust mites, pollen, or moulds and they may trigger the release of a chemical in the body that causes nasal congestion, sneezing, itchy eyes, and runny nose. These can then lead to a poor sleep, which can result in daytime sleepiness, fatigue, decreased productivity, impaired learning and memory, and even Sleep Apnoea and depression. The nasal congestion that is prominent as a result of allergies causes the upper airway to narrow, therefore increasing the risk of Sleep Apnoea, an extremely dangerous condition which occurs when the walls of the throat come together during sleep, blocking off the airway. These allergies only add to the problem and can lead to very serious health concerns.
How to Manage Your Allergies for a Better Night’s Sleep?
- Shower before bed to loosen congestion
- Try a warm cup of tea before bed to loosen congestion
- Keep your windows closed to prevent pollens entering
- Regularly change sheets and pillow cases
- Stay indoors on days with high pollen
- Use an air dehumidifier to help prevent the accumulation of mould
- Use vacuums and air cleaners to remove allergens from the air
- Vacuum often
- Wash pets regularly and do not sleep in the same room with them
Take Control of Your Allergies Today
It is critical that you manage your allergies and focus on getting a good night’s sleep. Being sleep deprived and missing out on valuable sleep time can affect your overall health which then in turn makes you more susceptible to falling prey to the allergies in the first place.
(Photo courtesy of sites.psu.edu)