Across the world, various studies have been conducted to assess the relationship between sleep and mental health.

Each of the studies carried out conclude that individuals living with poor mental health are more likely to feel restless, battle insomnia and struggle to get a good night sleep.

In fact, 75% of people with mental health disorders such as depression suffer from insomnia.

Regrettably, when an individual cannot secure between seven and nine hours of sleep per night, as recommended by the National Sleep Foundation, mental health disorders can escalate, causing many to experience pessimistic thoughts and feelings that compromise their overall wellbeing.

As sleep essentially promotes better mental health, we have delved into how sleep deprivation impairs our mental health and have shared our top tips for using sleep to promote better mental health below.

 

Sleep Deprivation and Mental Health

Sleep and mental health come hand-in-hand, yet it is believed that one in three adults fail to get enough sleep.  When an individual struggles to sleep, sleep deprivation emerges.

Various factors play a large role in sleep deprivation. For example, stress, trauma and anxiety are all cited as the top reasons individuals find it difficult to sleep at night.

The use of electronics before bed can also make it more challenging to get a good night sleep.

Regrettably, sleep deprivation and lack of sleep can have various ramifications on an individual’s mental health.  While many appreciate that a lack of sleep makes them feel extremely tired and reduces their ability to concentrate throughout the day, sleep deprivation has much more devastating consequences.

Below, we have outlined a number of the consequences sleep deprivation has on an individual’s mental health.

  • Sleep deprivation causes mental health disorders such as depression to heighten
  • Lack of sleep may cause you to feel extremely irritable
  • A reduced amount of sleep will essentially have a negative impact on your mood, causing you to experience pessimistic thoughts and feelings
  • Poor sleep will likely cause you to experience increased bouts of anxiety
  • Inability to sleep may also cause you to feel somewhat paranoid

It should also be noted that when a mental health disorder is present, chronic sleep problems such as sleep deprivation and insomnia affect up to 80% of individuals. This means that your mental health disorder could well be the sole cause of your sleep deprivation.

 

Our Top Tips For Using Sleep To Promote Better Mental Health

With an understanding of the consequences of not getting enough sleep, it is essential to determine what you can do to ensure that you use sleep to promote better mental health.

To ensure that you can improve the quality of your sleep, we have shared our top tips for using sleep to promote better mental health below.

 

1. Establish A Sleep Routine

If you have found that your lack of sleep has taken its toll on your mental health, it may be worth trying to establish a sleep routine.

Although you may find yourself questioning how having a sleep routine will enable you to use sleep to promote better mental health, routines are proven to enhance an individual’s mental health.

Establishing a sleep routine could be as simple as setting a specific time to wake up and go to sleep each day.

While routines can take some time to form, making an effort to establish a sleep routine will ensure that you can use sleep to promote better mental health.

 

2. Journal

Individuals across the world report that they cannot sleep due to having various thoughts swarming their minds.

From worrying about something that happened in the past to feeling anxious about something that is yet to happen, failure to alleviate your internal worries will see you find it harder to sleep.  In turn, your mental health will likely suffer

If the above resonates with you, you may find it beneficial to journal before attempting to sleep.  This is because journaling will provide you with the opportunity to write your thoughts and feelings down.

 

3. Take Part In A Form of Exercise During The Day

Many studies have already dictated that exercise is highly beneficial for promoting better mental health, but are you aware that exercise can also support you in securing a better night sleep?

The Sleep Foundation reports that 30-minutes of exercise each day can reduce the time it takes an individual to fall asleep at night.  In addition, it is believed that exercise helps many avoid broken sleep.

Having secured a better night sleep, you will find that your mood enhances, leaving you feeling optimistic about what the day has in store for you.

 

4. Remove Any Distractions From Your Bedroom

Did you know that your sleeping environment can dictate how well you will sleep each night?

To ensure that you get a good night sleep to promote better mental health, it may be worth considering whether there are currently any distractions in your bedroom that could hinder your ability to fall asleep.

For example, if you currently have any electronic devices in your bedroom that you would typically use for work, such as a laptop, you may well find it harder to switch off at night.

However, removing any distractions that may prevent you from sleeping will enhance your ability to obtain the recommended seven to nine hours of sleep each night.

Not only will this leave you feeling refreshed and ready to tackle the day, but you will find that your mental health benefits significantly too.

 

Contact Addiction Advocates Today

If you are struggling with a mental health disorder and have reviewed our tips for using sleep to promote better mental health yet find yourself in need of professional support, we are on hand to help.

At Addiction Advocates, we can help you secure the treatment you need when you need it.

To find out how we can support you, please call us today on 0800 012 6088.

 

Sources

https://www.sleepfoundation.org/mental-health

https://www.sleepfoundation.org/how-sleep-works/how-much-sleep-do-we-really-need#:~:text=National%20Sleep%20Foundation%20guidelines1,to%208%20hours%20per%20night.

https://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2016/p0215-enough-sleep.html

https://www.health.harvard.edu/newsletter_article/sleep-and-mental-health#:~:text=Chronic%20sleep%20problems%20affect%2050,deficit%20hyperactivity%20disorder%20(ADHD).

https://www.sleepfoundation.org/insomnia/exercise-and-insomnia

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