What is the connection between sleep and mental health?
Lack of sleep, and the interruption of sleep, can lead to people being irritable and subdued. It can also cause problems with concentration, and lead to people making mistakes and having accidents. All of these issues can cause you to have problems if you experience them. This is especially the case in certain situations, such as if you are behind the wheel of a car.
There could also be another consequence of not getting enough sleep. It could have a detrimental effect on your mental health.
Research suggests mental health can be improved if insomnia is cured
In September 2017, British newspaper The Guardian reported on research that had been carried out, using a group of 3,700 students in the UK. The research showed that cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) aimed at helping with insomnia also helped with issues such as hallucinations, anxiety and depression. These results seem to support the theory that mental health issues can be directly related to lack of sleep. The report of the research makes for interesting reading.
Why mental health issues make sleep problems more likely
Whilst it seems that problems with sleeping can lead to issues such as depression and anxiety, it’s also true to say that problems with mental health can cause a person to struggle with a normal sleep pattern, as reported by Harvard University as far back as 2009. This means that if you are anxious you are more likely to develop sleep issues than someone who does not have any difficulties with mental health.
You can start to see that it’s very easy to get into a cycle of not sleeping well, followed by a deterioration in mental health, followed by more difficulties with sleep. If you feel as though you are getting into this type of cycle, you should seek medical advice. It’s also possible that you may be able to alleviate some of the problems by trying to improve your sleep pattern.
How to increase the amount of sleep you get and improve the quality
There are certain factors that can have a detrimental effect on your sleep patterns. Here are some of the things that you need to consider:
- When you go to bed at night you should sleep, and not watch TV or chat on social media.
- You should not drink or eat anything that contains caffeine, or other stimulants, in the two hours before you go to bed.
- A bedroom should be as dark as possible, so that your body can recognise that it’s time to go to sleep.
- Taking a warm bath before you go to bed can help you to relax, making it easier for you to get to sleep.
- Experts like Loom and Leaf make mattresses that can help you get the support you need to sleep soundly.
All of these factors can play an important role, when it comes to ensuring that you get the right amount of sleep.
Mental health issues, such as depression and anxiety, can be very unpleasant to experience. This is why you need to do everything you can to deal with these issues, if you are affected. Taking a look at your sleep problems is a big step in helping you to do this.