People suffering from gout might often experience the flare-up of symptoms during the night. The painful gout symptoms can interrupt their sleep and lead to different health issues. Hence, it is important for you to control the flare-up of your symptoms at night for leading a better life.
Why Gout Flare-Ups Occur At Night?
Gout flare-ups occur when high amounts of uric acid crystals get accumulated in your joints. The production of uric acid crystals will be high when there are increased levels of uric acid in your body. The levels of uric acid might be high during the night which can trigger the production of crystals.
Experts are not sure what causes gout symptoms to flare-up during the night than other times of the day. However, they believe that this phenomenon might be a combined effect of the reasons listed below:
Drop In Body Temperature
Your body temperature can drop slightly during sleep. This slight drop in temperature might boost the production of uric acid crystals in your joints.
This also explains why gout symptoms often affect your fingers and feet than other joints, as these extremities tend to have a lower temperature when compared to other body parts.
Changes In Breathing
When you sleep, certain changes can occur in your breathing patterns that might affect the formation of uric acid crystals. Changes in breathing can catalyze the formation of uric acid crystals in two ways:
- During sleep, your breathing pattern will slow down which creates a reduction in the amounts of carbon dioxide expelled by the lungs. Excess amounts of carbon dioxide can make your blood slightly more acidic. This can encourage the production of uric acid crystals in your body.
- Sleep apnea, which is a sleep disorder, reduces the amount of oxygen consumed by your body. When the levels of oxygen are low in your body, it can lead to the formation of more purines thereby increasing the risk of gout symptoms.
Drop In The Levels Of Cortisone
The production of cortisone will be low when you sleep. Cortisone is responsible for suppressing inflammation. So when the levels of cortisone are low, it might trigger inflammation, which is closely associated with gout.
While sleeping, your body can lose moisture through sweating and breathing. The reduction in the water content in your blood can lead to the formation of uric acid crystals.
All these factors can increase the risk of gout flare-ups at night. So you have to consult your doctor for knowing how to manage the gout symptoms when you sleep.