Sleep is an essential part of your daily routine. It’s vital for your health and beauty. When you’re not able to get the sleep you need, your appearance will suffer, whether you’re losing sleep to stress or to sleep apnea.
If you’re not getting enough sleep, it can dry your skin, accelerate the aging process, and overall make you look less attractive and less socially desirable. But the good news is that sleep apnea treatment can reverse these problems and help you look more attractive again.
Skin Damage Related to Sleep Apnea
Overnight, your body nourishes and repairs itself. This is as true for your skin as it is for the rest of the body. When you’re not getting enough sleep, your skin isn’t getting as much chance to repair itself.
Even worse, sleep deprivation can play havoc on the body’s stress system, increasing the release of the stress hormone cortisol. Cortisol can damage many aspects of your health, including the health of your skin. It can break down collagen and other essential proteins for maintaining healthy youthful skin. Without these, you’re more likely to develop facial creases and wrinkles.
But sleep apnea can be worse than just regular sleep deprivation. During apneic episodes, your body becomes stressed and releases cortisol. With potentially hundreds of episodes each night, your nights may be more stressful than your days if you have sleep apnea. And that’s not good for your skin at all.
Signs of Fatigue and Age
But it isn’t just your skin that is being damaged overnight. There are other aspects of your appearance that are impacted by your sleep problems. For example, if you’re not sleeping enough, you’re more likely to experience dilation of blood vessels, which can contribute to dark bags under your eyes.
Studies show that people who are sleep deprived are more likely to look fatigued and aged. The problem with sleep apnea is that it means you’ll always be sleep deprived, no matter how much time you try to rest each night.
Lower Attractiveness and Social Desirability
What’s the combined impact of all these factors of premature aging and skin damage? Well, according to a very recent study, it makes people think you’re less attractive and it makes them less likely to want to spend time with you.
In this study, people had their pictures taken after two days of restricted sleep or after normal sleep and their pictures were rated for attractiveness, health, sleepiness, and trustworthiness. They were also asked to determine whether they would want to socialize with the individual in the picture.
Raters said that they thought the people looked less attractive, less healthy, and more sleepy when they’d been sleep deprived. And, of course, they said they didn’t want to socialize with those people as much.
Sleep Apnea Treatment Helps You Look Your Best
But there’s an upside to all this: sleep apnea treatment can help. Studies have shown that sleep apnea treatment can reverse some of the effects the condition has on your appearance. After treating your sleep apnea, you’ll look:
- More alert
- More attractive
And you’ll probably be a more desirable social companion, too. These effects may be equal with different types of sleep apnea treatment, but oral appliances have the benefit that they’re unlikely to cause skin effects like irritation or acne like CPAP can.
If you are unhappy with the effects of sleep apnea on your appearance or your current sleep apnea treatment, please call (402) 493-4175 today for an appointment with an Omaha sleep dentist at the Advanced Dental Sleep Treatment Center.