Monday, August 17, 2009

Infertility & Lack of Sleep

What's the connection, if any, you ask? I just read this article by Michael J. Breus about a possible link between lack of sleep and impaired fertility. He mentions these points:
  • Sleep's effect on the body's hormonal system - implying that a lack of sleep could hinder regular ovulation.
  • Sleep deprivation's effect on leptin levels, which can also have an impact on ovulation.
  • Insomniacs' higher levels of cortisol and adrenocorticotropic, both of which can suppress healthy cycles.

He quotes this article by Toni Parker that discusses research performed in Boston on women athletes who were given leptin to help resume their menstrual cycles and restore ovarian function. (There's a movie clip and several tips on how to sleep better there too.)

And while I find all of these studies interesting - and their advice good to follow, just for general good health - I think it's still important to say that a lot of cases of infertility can't be solved simply by getting a better night's sleep - on the other hand, you really have nothing to lose...


Tim Boh said...

Novuscor a software company that developed FertileView did see indications of hormonal imbalances because of a lack of sleep through the FertileView software. The body utilizes sleep to rejuvenate and balance itself. FertileView software program is an assisted reproductive software technology that supports fertility management and infertility. Couples will use FertileView to understand their fertility. FertileView software will provide target times and the best time to achieve pregnancy.

Anonymous said...

I can so totally believe it. My cycles were so badly screwed on nightshift that I actually quit my job because I thought that was what was stopping us getting pregnant. I got a day job, got my cycles back within a few weeks... eventually found out we had no sperm anyway. So. Your other point is also very well made.

That said, not all women have cycles that freak out at the merest mention of a lifestyle upset. Mine can go AWOL for the slightest reason, others just forge on every 28 days regardless of sky falling in. They can probably keep partying all night and be fine.