Solidarity Blog

Sleep Awareness Week

The Healing Power of Sleep: Sleep Awareness Week 2024

In today’s fast-paced culture, where productivity is glorified and late nights are worn as badges of honor, the importance of sleep often takes a back seat. However, sleep is not just a luxury; it’s fundamental for health and well-being. As we recognize National Sleep Awareness Week this week, I invite you to discover five key benefits of getting a good night’s sleep.

The Phases of Sleep:

To understand the benefits of sleep, it’s helpful to understand what happens after we drift off. Sleep is generally divided into two main phases, which each serve unique purposes in restoring the body and mind:

1. NREM (Non-Rapid Eye Movement) Sleep: This initial stage is characterized by slow brain waves and is essential for physical restoration, including muscle repair and growth.

2. REM (Rapid Eye Movement) Sleep: The brain becomes highly active during this stage, which resembles wakefulness, and is responsible for facilitating cognitive function, memory consolidation, and emotional regulation.

The Medical Benefits of Sleep:

1. Enhanced Cognitive Function: Not only does getting adequate sleep improve concentration, problem-solving skills, memory retention, and overall cognitive performance, but it also fosters creativity.

2. Improved Mood and Mental Health: Sleep plays a vital role in regulating mood and emotional well-being, which means that chronic sleep deprivation is linked to an increased risk of depression, anxiety, and other mood disorders.

3. Strengthened Immune System: Quality sleep is essential for a robust immune system because during sleep, the body produces proteins called cytokines that help combat infections and inflammation. Lack of sleep can weaken immune function, making us more susceptible to illness.

4. Heart Health: Because sleep helps regulate blood pressure and reduces stress on the heart, getting adequate sleep is associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular diseases such as heart attacks, stroke, and hypertension.

5. Weight Management: Sleep deprivation disrupts the balance of the appetite-regulating hormones ghrelin and leptin, which can lead to increased appetite and weight gain. Adequate sleep is essential for maintaining a healthy metabolism and preventing obesity.

From boosting cognitive function to strengthening our immune systems, the benefits of sufficient sleep are essential. Use Sleep Awareness Week to kick off prioritizing sleep – unlocking your full potential and lead a happier, healthier life.

Solidarity’s Commitment to Healthy Sleep:

Having trouble sleeping? If you have health concerns which require a sleep study, Solidarity is happy to help. As part of our commitment to promoting sleep health and well-being, Solidarity shares comprehensive sleep studies conducted at specialized sleep study locations as well as at-home sleep studies.

Sleep Awareness Week – Sleep Resources:

Sleep Apnea:

Circadian Sleep Disorders:


Restless Legs Syndrome:

Dr. John C. Oertle – Chief Medical Officer of Solidarity HealthShare