Quality health cover that meets your needs doesn’t need to be complicated or too expensive. We offer you great cover, easy claims, and above all we tell it like it is – Affinity Health

To find out more, give us a call today!

One of our qualified and friendly agents will be happy to assist you.

Call Center:

0861 11 00 33


086 607 9419

General Enquiries:


Find a Doctor/Dentist

or Dentist


Where can you go?


Near me

The Official National Department of Health COVID-19 Support Service: 060 012 3456 (WhatsApp)

Find a Doctor/Dentist

Near me


Where can you go?


Near me


Improve Your Sleep Hygiene For Better Health

The older you get, the more you realise how important sleep is for your well-being. Not only does it keep you feeling refreshed, but it also plays a critical role in maintaining your physical health. Read on to discover how to improve your sleep hygiene for better health.

What is Sleep Deprivation?

There are instances when it’s difficult to fall asleep. You might have a lot on your mind or deal with mental or physical health concerns that impact getting enough sleep. Being unable to sleep regularly for a night or two might be harmless. However, it can be severe when it lasts for weeks or even months.


Sleep is a process influenced by various factors and changes from birth to adulthood. Depending on age, genetics, and health status, you might require more or fewer hours of sleep than the next person. Even though there are exceptions, it’s still uncommon when your sleep patterns suddenly change for the worse, causing sleep deprivation.

What Causes Sleep Deprivation?

Various factors cause irregular sleep. Some can be temporary, while others can be signs of underlying health concerns with potentially long-term consequences. If you are facing sleep deprivation, these are considered the most common causes:

  • Chronic pain.
  • Anxiety and depression.
  • Substance and stimulant misuse.
  • Poor nutrition.
  • Environmental changes.
  • Irregular behavioural habits.

5 Common Sleep Disorders



Insomnia is a common sleeping disorder characterised by a failure to fall asleep or maintain it. It can also occur if sleep is cut short and you wake up earlier but can’t go back to sleep. Irregular sleeping patterns can lead to poor functioning throughout the day.


Sleep Apnea

Did you know that an estimated 45% of adults are occasional snorers? While you might think it’s an annoying habit, it can indicate an underlying health condition: sleep apnea. Sleep-related breathing concerns can interfere with maintaining regular sleep patterns.


Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS)

In other cases, you might be vulnerable to specific physical movement restrictions affecting your sleep. For instance, you might experience unpleasant pain in your lower legs while sleeping. This sensation can cause sleep disturbances that require medical attention.



If you have parasomnia, you are likely to display abnormal behaviour while you sleep. You might talk, sleep-walk or do other unusual things while sleeping. In most cases, you won’t remember what you did while in that state, and this behaviour can be dangerous if it’s left untreated.



On the other hand, you might struggle to stay awake during the day. Research suggests that narcolepsy is a chronic sleep disorder that can lead to excessive daytime sleepiness that causes weakened muscles and hallucinations. If you experience symptoms of narcolepsy, you should consult with your doctor for immediate treatment options.

How to Improve Your Sleep Hygiene

If you struggle with getting quality sleep, consider a few at-home remedies to improve how you handle your bedtime requirements. However, it’s advisable to seek medical assistance for proper diagnosis and treatment options if your sleep deprivation is prolonged. These are some practical tips to improve your sleep hygiene:

  • Create a routine and set your bedtime.
  • Avoid having stimulants such as coffee, energy drinks or substances before bedtime.
  • Improve your physical activity levels to help regulate brain chemicals required for improved sleep quality.
  • Focus on effective stress management solutions to reduce the effects of mental health-related concerns.
  • Eat a nutrient-rich diet that aids digestion and enhances sleep quality.

What are the 6 Effects of Sleep Deprivation?

Immune System

Your immune system maintains specific processes, such as producing infection-fighting antibodies while you sleep. This is the most favourable time for your body to defend against illness. However, when you don’t receive sufficient sleep, your immune system can’t build up protective mechanisms, and it can take longer to recover when you get sick.


Central Nervous System

Sleep is necessary to ensure your system processes information to keep it functioning correctly. Sleep deprivation can leave your brain exhausted, causing a delay in sending signals and compromising your coordination, decision-making, and related processes. These damaging effects can impact your mental abilities and emotional well-being.


Digestive System

Did you know that regular sleep maintains the production of leptin and ghrelin, the hormones that control when you feel hungry or full? When awake, your brain sends mixed signals that lead to the overproduction of ghrelin, the appetite stimulant, leading to late-night snacking. Continued sleep deprivation is considered a risk factor for obesity.


Cardiovascular System

Quality sleep helps regulate processes responsible for keeping your heart healthy. Most importantly, it is critical to ensure your blood vessels and heart heal and repair accordingly. Sleep deprivation disrupts these functions and can increase your risk of higher inflammation, blood pressure, and blood sugar levels, making you vulnerable to cardiovascular diseases.


Respiratory System

According to research, poor sleep can lead to severe respiratory-related illnesses. If you have sleep apnea, you may experience partial or complete upper airway obstruction that can lower oxygen levels and significantly impact lung function. It can increase your risk of respiratory infections such as influenza and pneumonia in the long term.


Endocrine System

Sleep deprivation can affect the production of various hormones, such as estrogen, melatonin, testosterone, and the human growth hormone. These hormones are essential for controlling multiple processes in your body and can lead to health concerns when they aren’t regulated. Poor-quality sleep can lead to hormone imbalances and an increased risk of various health concerns.


In summary, severe sleep deprivation can be the cause of some health concerns or worsen existing ones. Good quality sleep is essential to promoting better overall health and reducing interference with everyday life. With Affinity Health coverage, you can access a network of doctors who can diagnose your sleep deprivation and provide effective treatment interventions.

If you would like to leave a comment


Get A Free Quote