Got a vaccination appointment coming up? You’d best set your bedtime a little earlier, sir.
According to a new study published in Current Biology, getting less than six hours of sleep the night before a vaccine dose can make it less effective. CNN reports that while the study didn't specifically include Covid-19 data, because that data hasn't been adequately studied yet, the study's lead author believes it still applies and might cut the time of the vaccine's effectiveness by as much as two months.
CNN reports that Eve Van Cauter, lead author and professor emeritus at the University of Chicago's Department of Medicine, believes getting enough rest strengthens protection against viruses or bacteria. "Good sleep not only amplifies but may also extend the duration of protection of the vaccine," she said in a statement about the study.
Related: Sleep Can Save You From Developing Chronic Illnesses
One wrinkle to the study, though: It seems this mostly applies to men and not to women. That may reflect hormonal, genetic, or environmental differences.
The story suggests that if you're jet lagged, working a night shirt, or have some other problem that would keep you from getting at least six hours, you should consider rescheduling your vaccine appointment. Chronic bad sleep has a lot of other bad health outcomes as well in addition to immune system problems.
Now here's the trick: Don't let this information freak you out and give you so much anxiety that you lose sleep because of it the night before your next vaccine.
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