close icon

what are you looking for?

close icon

badges you can earn


earn editorial badges by uploading a number of stories.
  • 1
    writer
  • 10
    senior writer
  • 20
    sub - editor
  • 50
    editor
close icon

Sign Up


use your university email address to create your account.

Username already exists, please use another email address.

Please ensure all fields aren't empty









 
  • Please Select
  • Abertay University
  • Aberystwyth University
  • Anglia Ruskin University
  • Anglo-European College of Chiropractic
  • Arden University
  • Arts University Bournemouth
  • Ashridge Executive Education
  • Aston University
  • Bangor University
  • Bath Spa University
  • Birkbeck University of London
  • Birmingham City University
  • Bishop Grosseteste University
  • Bournemouth University
  • BPP University
  • British School of Osteopathy
  • Brunel University
  • Bucks New University
  • Canterbury Christ Church University
  • Cardiff Metropolitan University
  • Cardiff University
  • City, University of London
  • Courtauld Institute of Art
  • Coventry University
  • Cranfield University
  • De Montfort University
  • Durham University
  • Edge Hill University
  • Edinburgh Napier University
  • European School of Economics
  • Falmouth University
  • Glasgow Caledonian University
  • Glasgow School of Art
  • Goldsmiths, University of London
  • Guildhall School of Music and Drama
  • Harper Adams University
  • Heriot-Watt University
  • Heythrop College, University of London
  • Imperial College London
  • Keele University
  • King's College London
  • Kingston University
  • Lancaster University
  • Leeds Beckett University
  • Leeds College of Art
  • Leeds Trinity University
  • Liverpool Hope University
  • Liverpool John Moores University
  • London Business School
  • London Metropolitan University
  • London School of Economics and Political Science
  • London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
  • London South Bank University
  • Loughborough University
  • Manchester Metropolitan University
  • Middlesex University
  • Newcastle University
  • Newman University, Birmingham
  • Northumbria University
  • Norwich University of the Arts
  • Nottingham Trent University
  • Oxford Brookes University
  • Plymouth College of Art
  • Plymouth Marjon University
  • Plymouth University
  • Queen Margaret University
  • Queen Mary University of London
  • Queen's University Belfast
  • Regent's University London
  • Robert Gordon University
  • Rose Bruford College
  • Royal Academy of Music
  • Royal Agricultural University
  • Royal Central School of Speech and Drama
  • Royal College of Art
  • Royal College of Music
  • Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
  • Royal Holloway, University of London
  • Royal Northern College of Music
  • Royal Veterinary College
  • School of Advanced Study
  • Scotland's Rural College
  • Sheffield Hallam University
  • SOAS, University of London
  • Southampton Solent University
  • St George's, University of London
  • St Mary's University, Twickenham
  • Staffordshire University
  • Swansea University
  • Teesside University
  • The American International University in London
  • The London Institute of Banking & Finance
  • The Open University
  • The University of Law
  • Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance
  • Ulster University
  • University College Birmingham
  • University College London
  • University College of Estate Management
  • University for the Creative Arts
  • University of Aberdeen
  • University of Bath
  • University of Bedfordshire
  • University of Birmingham
  • University of Bolton
  • University of Bradford
  • University of Brighton
  • University of Bristol
  • University of Buckingham
  • University of Cambridge
  • University of Central Lancashire
  • University of Chester
  • University of Chichester
  • University of Cumbria
  • University of Derby
  • University of Dundee
  • University of East Anglia
  • University of East London
  • University of Edinburgh
  • University of Essex
  • University of Exeter
  • University of Glasgow
  • University of Gloucestershire
  • University of Greenwich
  • University of Hertfordshire
  • University of Huddersfield
  • University of Hull
  • University of Kent
  • University of Leeds
  • University of Leicester
  • University of Lincoln
  • University of Liverpool
  • University of London
  • University of Manchester
  • University of Northampton
  • University of Nottingham
  • University of Oxford
  • University of Portsmouth
  • University of Reading
  • University of Roehampton
  • University of Salford
  • University of Sheffield
  • University of South Wales
  • University of Southampton
  • University of St Andrews
  • University of Stirling
  • University of Strathclyde
  • University of Suffolk
  • University of Sunderland
  • University of Surrey
  • University of Sussex
  • University of the Arts
  • University of the Highlands and Islands
  • University of the West of England
  • University of the West of Scotland
  • University of Wales
  • University of Wales Trinity Saint David
  • University of Warwick
  • University of West London
  • University of Westminster
  • University of Winchester
  • University of Wolverhampton
  • University of Worcester
  • University of York
  • Wrexham Glyndwr University
  • Writtle University College
  • York St John University

By creating an account you agree to the uni news Terms and Conditions, and agree to receive marketing communications.

close icon

subscribe to uni news


get the latest articles straight to your inbox.

Heart disease and lack of sleep—are they connected?

Today's society has glamourised the "if you're resting, then you're rusting" concept.

From the jokes about having copious amounts of coffee just so that you can operate during the day, to students taking caffeine pills and energy drinks to keep energy levels up—it's safe to say that fatigue is something we all deal with. Unless you have a good sleeping pattern, many people underestimate the importance of sleep and the detrimental effects of the lack of sleep.

According to the National Sleep Foundation in the United States, if you're getting less than seven hours of sleep per night, you're not getting enough sleep. Did you know that on average, individuals worldwide get around 6.8 hours of snooze time every night, which is approximately less than ninety minutes less than our ancestors had a century ago?

What is heart disease?
beating heart GIF

The most common type of heart disease comes in the form of heart attacks. A heart attack occurs when special vessels connected to the heart called coronary arteries start to narrow. This increases the amount of pressure in the heart and it decreases blood supply which in turn affects the amount of oxygen that is transported to the heart and consequently the rest of the body. There are many reasons why coronary arteries can narrow, this includes plaque buildup from an increase in cholesterol from your diet. When plaque begins to grow, specialised cells in the body called white blood cells begin to settle in the plaque, this can cause ruptures which can eventually lead to blood clots in any part of the body.

Research shows that there is a correlation between a lack of sleep and an increase in white blood cells—which could be a plausible reason for an increased risk of heart disease.

So what happens to our bodies when we don’t get our daily requirement of sleepand why is this bad for our hearts and blood vessels?
night time azumi GIF by MANIAC

Lack of sleep causes an increase in our blood pressure. When persistently high blood pressure is evident this is a clinical condition called hypertension. When a person has continuous hypertension this places a big strain on the heart and on the blood vessels connected to the heart and throughout the body. Sleep deprivation causes an increase in the sympathetic system—or the "fight or flight" system. Symptoms that you experience when you are anxious, nervous, will typically include a spike in your heart rate. Health problems such as poor digestion/indigestion; constipation; anxiety; shallow breathing; restlessness and night sweats will increase blood pressure.

So whether it's term time or you're on winter break, there are benefits to getting a good sleep routine. Not only will you feel fresher in the morning but you'll have a better holistic approach to maintaining good health—having an adequate amount of good quality sleep is important.

Featured image: Kinga Cichewicz on Unsplash

Comments