Lack of sleep can do more than make you grumpier than Oscar the Grouch. It can have an impact on your immune system, according to a study conducted by the Surrey Sleep Research Centre. Researchers found that poor sleep quality for just one week could impact hundreds of genes related to metabolism, response to stress, and our immune system, which helps to protect us from illness and disease.
When you’re sick, the one thing your body needs more than anything else is often the one thing that feels the most elusive – sleep. You want it. You need it. But the symptoms of your cold or flu seem to make it impossible.
According to WebMD sleep expert Michael Breus, PhD, “It’s true that many cold and flu symptoms seem to get worse at night, and they can interfere with sleep just at the critical time when your body needs rest the most.” But, why is this the case and what can you do to increase your ability to sleep when you’re sick?