How Sleep Impacts Your Mental Health. Is binge-watching until the wee hours of the night your favorite thing? Or do you often work longer at night? Are you spending a lot of time partying into the early hours? Or do you have young children who usually keep you awake at night?
Many of us just don’t get the necessary seven or eight hours of sleep with school, family, and other life commitments. It can sometimes become the norm to have another coffee to get us through the day.
Sleep can easily be dismissed because it is believed as not an essential part of preserving a mental-friendly lifestyle – but are we missing something? How crucial is sleep during the night to function well?
Sleep, what is it good for?
Sleep is absolutely right for everything, especially with a luxury mattress. The brain physically and mentally restores the body during sleep. Tissues develop, and muscles relax, and strength regenerates during sleep in the deepest stages. Your body is in fix-it mode with about seven hours of good sleep. It restores hormones, cells of the skin, functions of the liver, the heart’s health, and more.
It almost seems that you are a superhero, only on a much slower and more practical basis with the ability to regenerate. So it might not be like you’re a superhero, but it’s pretty awesome still. Poor sleep is related to a higher risk of mental illness, that goes beyond the grumpiness that is caused by a hangover or keeping up with your favorite series. The following day you won’t be just like a zombie star from popular movies, but you’ll feel like one as well.
The brain starts functioning differently if you don’t get a good dose of sleep. That’s a bad thing. You can see it in your skin, hair, and face. It would be as if you had tiresome bags in your eyes. You can even see it in your habits, such as how to yawn at work throughout the day and drink several cups of coffee because you need the energy to make it through the day. Missing sleep may also be associated with disturbances in mental health.
So why is sleep so important for your mental health?
There is clear evidence of the negative effects of sleep deprivation on emotion and performance. The conclusions of a report explained that a lack of sleep shows a deficit in the ability to create new human memories. Nature Neuroscience, also shows that restful night of sleep may restore brain reactivity to prepare the following day for challenges.
At the end of each day, sleep has an essential restorative function to recharge the brain just as a mobile phone battery has to be charged after long service. The daily process of sleep-wake keeps the body’s natural rhythm reset every day, improving brain functioning.
Sleep deprivation and poor mental health go together. While most people who have poor sleep practice don’t experience anxiety and depression, sleeplessness, or insomnia are more at risk of mental illness.
The link between poor mental health and poor sleep is two-way. Sleep disturbances like insomnia, therefore, represent both a symptom of depression and a risk factor for depression and anxiety. Consequently, the risk for people suffering from insomnia increases by up to 10 times.
The opposite is exact, too. Just as lousy sleep increases the risk of depression, anxiety, and other mental illnesses, sleep problems can exacerbate if you have a mental health condition. If your constant lack of sleep is affecting your mental health, reach out for support, and talk to the licensed professionals at BetterHelp.
Sleep deprivation can impair your ability to think clearly
It’s much easier to focus, solve problems, and make decisions when you’re not short on sleep. This means that it is challenging to be the best person in your job, college, and social life without sufficient sleep.
The REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep is the deepest phase of the sleep cycle that stimulates the regions of the brain applied in learning. On one research, REM sleep has an effect on the development of specific competencies. Those in the study learned a skill and then deprived of REM sleep, which caused them not to remember what they learned. Alternatively, those who had good sleep quickly remembered what they had learned. Ultimately, when deep sleep is disrupted, our minds are weakened, and our ability to think clearly and retain information is diminished.
It is not uncommon for students to study for an exam and pull an “all-nighters”; however, the practice may be counterproductive rather than helpful. You can prepare your brain by getting to sleep early in a quality organic latex mattress.
Sleep concerns affect those with existing mental health conditions
Sleeping problems have once been seen as only symptoms of mental illness, but research now shows that they can contribute to or even be a cause for it. This also means that treating sleeping disorders can help relieve symptoms of mental health and vice versa. It should be remembered that persistent sleep problems affect approximately 50-80% of people living with mental illness and 10 to 18% of adults in the US.
Trouble sleeping is a symptom of depression
Studies have estimated that 65 to 90% of adults with clínical depression (and about 90% of children) have some kind of sleep problems. Most commonly, it is insomnia, but one in five is subjected to sleep apnea. Hypersomnia (excessive fatigue during the day) is also typical in depressed people. Sleeping problems are a contributing symptom, not only of depression.
Sleep impacts your mood
Consider the last time you had a poor sleep — how did you feel when your alarm came off? Have you woken up feeling inspired and fresh? You will probably suffer from grumpiness, mood swings, or even discomfort.
Research suggests that sleep quality is strongly linked to mood. Big reveal! This means that you might want to think about staying up watching your favorite shows.
Anxiety and sleep concerns are frequently present together
More than 50 percent of adults with anxiety are affected by sleep problems. These symptoms are also prevalent among those with post-traumatic stress disorder, panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorders, and phobic disorders. Deprivation of sleep also increases the risk of anxiety disorder–another situation of chicken and egg between sleep problems and other mental health conditions.
Seven ways to improve your sleeping habits for better mental health
1. Set up a regular sleep-wake cycle- and try to follow regularly.
2. Try to make sure you have a cozy bed and bedroom; you can, if possible, adjust your preferences to sound, light, and temperature. Check out what works well for you at a black Friday mattress sale.
3. Restrict the use of stimulants, including caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol before bedtime.
4. Do not drink excessive liquids-particularly at night, to minimize the chances of waking to empty your bladder.
5. Never go to bed until you are exhausted and ready. Many people with insomnia spend more time lying awake in bed than sleeping.
6. Regular daily workout – but not too late at night, as it might be stimulating. 7. Do not use electronics late at night — such as computers, mobiles, tablets, etc. — the bright light can be exciting and keep you awake.