DermNurse Medical Aesthetics

Sleeping Beauty

Oh sleep, Oh, gentle sleep.

Nature’s soft nurse How have I missed them?

That, though, will weigh my eyelids down

And sleep my senses in forgetfulness?

Henry IV, William Shakespeare

Getting enough sleep can be challenging. But why is sleep so important to our health, and what does it have to do with aging?

Insomnia can be defined as a chronic dissatisfaction with the quantity or quality of sleep involving difficulty falling asleep, frequent awakenings with difficulty falling back to sleep, and/or undesired early morning awakenings (Levenson, Kay, & Buysse, 2015).  Daytime symptoms include fatigue, sleepiness, impaired cognitive performance, and mood disturbances such as anxiety and depression. Insomnia can also lead to high blood pressure and related cardiovascular disease (Fernandez & Vgontzas, 2013), stroke, weight gain, and skin aging (Ganceviciene, Liakou, Theodoridis, Makrantonaki, & Zouboulis, 2012).

Risk factors for insomnia include older age, female gender, Caucasian ethnicity, perimenopausal state, sleep apnea, anxiety, depression, alcohol, smoking, caffeinated food or beverages, certain medications (stimulants), and poor sleep hygiene (Monjan, 2010).

After addressing potential health issues interfering with sleep, it is important to address and improve sleep hygiene to get your beauty sleep. For more information on improving sleep hygiene, you can follow this link:


Ganceviciene, R., Liakou, A. I., Theodoridis, A., Makrantonaki, E., & Zouboulis, C. C. (2012). Skin anti-aging strategies Dermato-Endocrinology4(3), 308–319.

Fernandez-Mendoza, J., & Vgontzas, A. N. (2013). Insomnia and Its Impact on Physical and Mental Health Current Psychiatry Reports15(12), 418.

Levenson, J. C., Kay, D. B., & Buysse, D. J. (2015). The Pathophysiology of Insomnia Chest147(4), 1179–1192.

Monjan, A. A. (2010) Perspective on Sleep and Aging Frontiers in Neurology1, 124.