How Sleep Can Affect Your Mood
Sleep plays perhaps the most important role in your health and wellbeing. Whilst you sleep, your body works to boost healthy brain function and your physical health (and for children/teenagers sleep supports growth and development).
Ever wondered why when you don’t get enough sleep or have a bad night you feel irritable, stressed generally down throughout the day?
Find out more about sleep and mood, PLUS 5 top tips from our sleep expert to help…
Current research studies suggest that the when people are sleep deprived they feel more tired, fatigued, irritable, a lacking of motivation, angry and even feel more depressed. Others have also found that sleep deprivation allows a greater emotional reactivity. Studies show this is due to the “increased amygdala activity (a brain structure integral to experiences of negative emotions such as anger and rage) and a disconnect between the amygdala and the area of the brain that regulates its functions.”*
We now know sleep can affect your mood, but your mood can also affect the way you sleep. If you feel anxious, agitated or generally stressed before going to bed this can lead to your ability to fall asleep quickly or at all. This vicious cycle of feeling stressed, lack of sleep, waking feeling unrefreshed and then feeling too agitated to sleep can lead to insomnia.
To help you get to sleep better and awake feeling more content for the day, here are our sleep expert’s top 5 tips:
Keep to the same time each week, as your brain likes routines. Find relaxing activities to help you wind down before going to sleep. For example, meditation, reading a book or taking a bath.
Reserve 7 to 9 hours a night for an uninterrupted night of sleep
Avoid drinking coffee or other stimulants after lunchtime
Eliminate all light from your bedroom and avoid harsh bright bathroom lights right before bed when cleaning your teeth, and if you wake up to go to the toilet.
Some studies have shown that exercise works as effectively as antidepressant medication. Exercise releases endorphins (chemicals in your brain) that make you feel good.**
If stress is what is causing your negative mood, this may be due to tense muscles. Exercise will help relieve the tension in your body making your body more relaxed.
* http://www.sleephealthfoundation.org.au/more/sleep-blog/128-sleep-and-mood.html https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/between-you-and-me/201308/all-night-the-effects-sleep-loss-mood