As we celebrate Mother's Day, we take a moment to acknowledge the tireless efforts and sleepless nights that new mothers endure. Here at Neurobit, we wanted to highlight a significant study from 2021 that underscores the importance of sleep health for new mothers. This research, conducted at UCLA, found an intriguing link between sleep deprivation in postpartum women and accelerated biological aging.
The research, led by Dr. Judith Carroll of the UCLA Cousins Center for Psychoneuroimmunology, involved 33 new mothers. Over a six-month period, the team measured their sleep duration, quality, and disturbances. The scientists then assessed the length of the women's telomeres, the protective ends of our chromosomes, which are often regarded as biological markers of aging.
Using established protocols, they assessed the biological age of the women through various epigenetic aging clock estimates, including intrinsic epigenetic age acceleration (IEAA), phenotypic epigenetic age acceleration (PEAA), and DNA methylation telomere length (DNAmTL).
Their findings were eye-opening. Insufficient sleep (less than 7 hours per night) during the early postpartum period was associated with older IEAA, PEAA, and shorter DNAmTL, suggesting accelerated biological aging. These correlations held true even after accounting for potential confounding factors. Each hour less of nightly sleep correlated with significantly shorter telomeres, suggesting accelerated biological aging.
Published in Sleep Health Journal, the study highlights the potential link between sleep deprivation in postpartum women and accelerated biological aging. As we consider the invaluable role of mothers, we at Neurobit emphasize the importance of innovative sleep health solutions that can help support new mothers during this crucial period.
The insights from this study remind us of the importance of sleep in new mothers' overall health and well-being. Dr. Carroll's work underscores the need for further understanding of the biological processes contributing to health risks during the postpartum period.
At Neurobit, we are committed to advancing sleep health research, particularly in underexplored areas such as postpartum sleep patterns. Our suite of innovative technologies, including the Neurobit Score, Z3 Pulse, and Neurobit Hub, facilitates comprehensive sleep health research.
The Neurobit Score, powered by AI and deep learning, offers accurate sleep event labeling, enhancing our understanding of individual sleep patterns. The Z3 Pulse, a wearable ECG device, provides detailed sleep reports that can be instrumental in sleep-related research. Lastly, Neurobit Hub facilitates the collection and analysis of extensive datasets, promoting the discovery of novel biomarkers and sleep-centric treatment strategies.
On this Mother's Day, we reaffirm our commitment to sleep health research, aiming to illuminate the sleep-related challenges new mothers face. At Neurobit, we believe that our innovative technologies can contribute to a broader vision of health, one where sleep health is prioritized and understood at every stage of life.
For more information about our technologies and how they can contribute to sleep health research, please email us at Research@Neurobit.com.
Carroll, J. E., Ross, K. M., Horvath, S., Okun, M., Hobel, C., Rentscher, K. E., Coussons-Read, M., & Schetter, C. D. (2021). Postpartum sleep loss and accelerated epigenetic aging. Sleep Health, 7(3), 362–367. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sleh.2021.02.002