If you’ve ever tossed and turned during the night, you already know how you’ll feel the next day: exhausted, irritated, and out of sync. But getting less sleep than the 7 to 9 hours each night, that is advised, has more negative effects than just making you feel lethargic and grumpy.
According to research, the connection between sleep and mental health is complicated. While many psychiatric disorders have long been known to have sleep deprivation as a side effect, more recent theories claim that sleep deprivation itself can contribute to the development and aggravation of a variety of mental health issues.
Studies have also shown that even a little bit of sleep loss can strongly influence mood.
Because of this circular relationship between your sleep patterns and your mental state, it is important to know the importance of sleep and how the deprivation of it can cause you the following problems:
For optimal performance, our brains require sleep. Brain fog, which frequently feels like disorientation or difficulty concentrating, can result from lack of sleep.
According to research, if your brain fog is brought on by insufficient sleep or a vitamin deficiency, it will likely go away once you get enough sleep or when you take supplements to meet your vitamin needs.
Changes in mood
Lack of sleep can affect how you feel, including making you more irritable. A person may experience emotions of worry and depression as a result of sleep loss.
According to research, getting too little sleep can make people more angry and aggressive. This is because the brain cannot operate normally when it is sleep deprived, which prevents it from being able to control the amygdala’s reaction (the emotional centre of the brain).
Your immune system creates antibodies and cytokines, which are protective, infection-fighting molecules, while you’re sleeping. These compounds help you fight against outside invaders like viruses and bacteria.
Certain cytokines can also promote sleep, which increases the effectiveness of your immune system in protecting your body from diseases.
Lack of sleep stops your immune system from strengthening. Insufficient sleep can also affect your body’s ability to fight off intruders as well as how quickly you recover from illnesses.
Your chances of developing chronic illnesses including diabetes mellitus and heart disease rise as a result of long-term sleep loss.
Lack of sleep is another risk factor for gaining weight, along with overeating and not exercising. Leptin and ghrelin, two hormones that regulate feelings of appetite and fullness, are affected by sleep.
Leptin indicates to your brain that you have had enough food. Without enough sleep, your brain produces less leptin and more appetite-stimulating hormone ghrelin. The change in these hormones may count for late-night overeating or midnight munching.
Other techniques for regaining a regular sleep schedule include
- Restricting daytime naps.
- Avoid coffee after lunch or at least several hours before bedtime.
- Observing your bedtime schedule on weekends and during vacations, going to sleep at the same time each night, and rising at the same time each morning.
- Avoiding heavy meals a few hours before bedtime, spending an hour before bed relaxing activities like reading, meditation, or having a bath.
- Avoid using electronics just before bedtime. Exercise regularly, but not in the late evening or right before bed.
- Reduce alcohol consumption.
While better sleep is not a miracle or quick fix for mental health problems, it can be an important part of a complete therapy plan. Because of the connection between sleep and mental health, experts believe that discovering techniques to improve sleep may benefit a variety of illnesses.
Furthermore, you should also undergo preventive health checkups. These health checkups give a complete report about your health, allowing you to take necessary precautionary measures to improve your well-being and keep various ailments at bay.