Sleep makes us look and feel better

by Bonnie

Sometimes it's all we can think about, especially when we're not getting enough of it.

Sometimes it's all we can think about, especially when we're not getting enough of it. We crave it all day and lie awake at night thinking of it. Yep, sleep really is great stuff.

Not only does a nine-hour session make us feel much better, it can make a difference to the way we look as well. After all, it's not called beauty sleep for nothing.

However, it is not known yet why we end up looking so rough after a broken night of tossing and turning, according to the Daily Mail.

Consultant dermatologist Dr Nick Lowe told the newspaper: "There's a lack of evidence-based research into the relationship between sleep and appearance in the short term. There's an increasing body of work suggesting that in the long-term, sleep deprivation could prematurely age skin."

He explained that chronic lack of sleep – which is defined as consistently getting less than seven to nine hours of sleep each night – can affect the immune system within a few weeks, which makes it harder for skin to repair damage done to it during the day.

"Other research has discovered a link between lack of sleep and increased levels of the stress hormone cortisol. At high levels, this can inhibit the formation of collagen, essential for healthy, youthful skin," Dr Lowe added.

So how can you go about sleeping better? There are the obvious methods to try – running a hot bubble bath and taking time to unwind before getting between the sheets, ensuring a window is left open so the room isn't too hot and even counting the proverbial sheep.

Going to bed and getting up at the same time every day is also recommended for poor sleepers, as this way your body gets used to the routine. It might take a few days to get into synch, but eventually you may not need an alarm to wake up because you'll have had enough sleep by the time you need to get up.

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