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Sleep Debt Affects Female Fertility Too

How well you sleep or don't sleep can seriously alter the balance of hormones in your body and can also disrupt your sleep/wake cycle, also called the circadian rhythm. A disrupted circadian rhythm may influence cancer progression through shifts in hormones like melatonin, which the brain makes during sleep.

The right amount of sleep is also key to replenishing a woman's reproductive system. Too little sleep, however, can even lead to menstrual irregularity which may delay the time it takes for a woman to conceive.

However, by exposing women to artificial light around the middle of their cycles while they slept, researchers were able to alter the length of women's menstrual cycles, according to a recent study. The hormones that trigger ovulation, and even the sperm maturation process, are somehow tied into the body's biological clock, according to one scientist who oversaw some of this research.

Some good techniques for improving the quality of your sleep:

  • My current favorite is the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT). Most people can learn this gentle tapping technique in several minutes.
  • Avoid bedtime snacks, particularly grains and sugars which will raise your blood sugar and inhibit sleep.
  • Reading something spiritual or religious will help you to relax.
  • Sleep in complete darkness or as close as possible. When light hits the eyes, it disrupts the circadian rhythm of the pineal gland and production of melatonin and seratonin. There also should be as little light in the bathroom as possible if you get up in the middle of the night.


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