Iron deficiency and sleep: Here's how they relate

One of the most typical issues is iron deficiency, which can have numerous causes. We will talk about the connection between an iron deficiency and sleep in this article. Does an iron deficiency cause sleep issues? Who are most susceptible to iron deficiency?

Iron deficiency and sleep: Here's how they relate

Due to its role in the development of red blood cells, which are in charge of carrying oxygen throughout the body, iron is one of the most crucial elements in the human body.

As a result, if someone has an iron deficiency, it's possible that less red blood cells are produced, which prevents some parts of the body from getting the oxygen they require. One of the most prevalent issues and main causes of anaemia is iron deficiency. Fatigue, exhaustion, fainting, shortness of breath, and possible sleep disorders are all symptoms of iron deficiency. This is what we will learn about in the following:

Iron deficiency and sleep: what is the relationship?

A study indicated that iron deficiency may affect the quality of sleep, regardless of some psychological problems caused by iron deficiency, such as depression and anxiety, but there is still a need for more studies on iron deficiency and sleep. The following are some of the main signs of iron deficiency that can interfere with sleep:

1. Anxiety, stress and tension 

A person's ability to relax, sleep, and get a good night's sleep may all be affected by iron deficiency, which can increase feelings of anxiety. When a person feels anxious, the body stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system, cortisol secretion rises and melatonin secretion, the hormone responsible for sleep, falls.

2. Extreme fatigue

Feeling tired is the most common symptom of iron deficiency, and as we said earlier, there is no direct relationship between iron deficiency and sleep, but extreme fatigue caused by iron deficiency may lead to fatigue and will hinder the ability to relax and sleep.

3. Restless leg syndrome 

Dopamine, a neurotransmitter that keeps muscles active and moving, functions better with the help of iron.

Dopamine will be impacted by iron deficiency, which could result in restless legs syndrome.

Restless legs syndrome is a condition in which the patient feels a strong and continuous desire to move the leg accompanied by an itching sensation, and the patient's condition usually worsens at night and during sleep, which leads to problems and difficulty sleeping. We conclude that iron deficiency and magnesium deficiency may be the causes of this condition. This condition may also be a result of iron deficiency and sleep.

Categories most vulnerable to iron deficiency and sleep disorders

Here are the people most at risk of iron deficiency:

1. Women 

If they have heavy periods or are pregnant, women are more likely to develop iron deficiency, especially during and after menstruation.

2. Children

To aid in their growth, kids should consume more foods high in iron.

Children who drink large amounts of cow's milk may be at risk of developing iron deficiency. This is due to the possibility that cow's milk will prevent iron absorption.

3. Vegetarians 

Since meat is one of the most important and primary sources of iron, vegetarians should take supplements or other iron-containing foods to reduce their risk of developing anaemia and iron deficiency.

4. Crohn's disease 

Crohn's disease patients frequently experience anaemia as a result of iron deficiency and hypothyroidism. It has been discovered that many hypothyroid patients also experience anaemia; this may be because their bodies do not produce enough triiodothyronine (T3) hormone, which affects the level of stomach acidity and may hinder iron absorption.

How to deal with sleep disorders caused by iron deficiency

While iron deficiency and sleep are not directly related, as we previously stated, the cause of iron deficiency must be identified in order to treat sleep issues, and some iron deficiency treatments that may aid in sleep are only available after consulting a doctor and undergoing the required tests:

  • The patient may need to take nutritional supplements for several months or for a year or more to make up for the deficiency of iron in the blood and bring it back to normal levels. Iron supplements, iron supplements may help increase iron levels in the blood.
  • Pills used to prevent heavy menstrual flow include birth control pills.
  • Medications and antibiotics are used to treat peptic ulcers.
  • Surgery. Some tumors may cause iron deficiency in the blood, so the patient may need surgery.
  • taking intravenous iron. Some patients who have severe iron deficiency may need to take iron intravenously or may need a blood transfusion to replace the iron and the amount of hemoglobin in the body.

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