Scientist links Insomnia to erectile dysfunction, diabetes, others

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Chief Medical Director, Caribbean Health, Dr. Patrick Ijewere, has said that the lack of sleep does not only cause Erectile Dysfunction (ED) in men, but has its effects on women too.

Speaking in Lagos on the occasion of World Sleep Day 2016 organised by Vitafoam Nigeria Plc, he explained that, insomnia upsets lots of hormones such as the testosterones, estrogens, serotonins, and many others, which affects optimal sexual performance.

He cited that most causes of ED among his patients are often related to insomnia.

Ijewere, in his address, pointed out that, studies have shown that sleep deprivation is linked to a variety of chronic medical conditions, such as high blood pressure, obesity and diabetes mellitus.

According to him, when people sleep, their bodies go through repair from the damage caused to the body from the previous day, “so the system needs rejuvenation to restore the cells of what they have used up.”

He further explained that the cells that line the blood vessels produce a chemical called nitrous oxide, which helps the vessels to expand and relax, in response to pressure that comes in from heart pumping.

However, “when a person lacks sleep, there is high level of free radical damage inside those cells, and they produce less nitrous oxide over time, so cell walls lose their ability to respond to pressure from heart pumping, which hardens them and subsequently increasing the pressure.”

Ijewere, who was the guest speaker, also noted that insomnia in most people often leads to diabetes mellitus too, since lack of sleep over time impacts the low production of insulin in the pancreas, thereby leading to diabetes.

“There have been well-studied connection between lack of sleep, oxidative stress, hormonal dysfunctions, cell dysfunctions and disease appearance,” he added.

Addressing the theme for this year’s celebration, tagged: “Good sleep is a reachable dream,” the Group Managing Director of Vitafoam Nigeria Plc, Taiwo Adeniyi, said, “We are confident that good sleep is an achievable dream with Vitafoam, and that is why we have transcended beyond sleep business to the living business.”

Adeniyi expressed the importance of sleep, saying, “Sound sleep is a treasured function and one of the core pillars of health, because when sleep fails, health declines and subsequently a decreasing quality of life.”

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