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How lack of sleep can affect your mental health

Having suffered from severe Sleep problems as a result of fibromyalgia, I’ve taken some time to look at the relationship between a lack of sleep and Mental health.

How lack of sleep can affect your mental health


Insomnia involves difficulty in getting enough sleep to feel refreshed in the morning.
The lack of sleep may be due to finding it difficult to get to sleep, waking up multiple times and/or waking up early and not being able to get back to sleep.
As well as affecting your physical health, the lack of sleep can affect your mental health as well.

Links between insomnia and mental health

How lack of sleep can affect your mental health
(Picture: Liberty Antonia Sadler for Metro.co.uk)
Insomnia has long been thought of as a symptom of some psychiatric disorders, given that over two thirds of people with mental illness suffer from sleep problems (the most prevalent being insomnia).
But the condition is now also being considered as a contributing factor for developing a mental illness.
There are various stages of sleep, each with specific benefits.
The deepest stage of sleep produces biological changes that boost immune system functioning.
For example, rapid eye movement (REM) sleep enhances learning, memory and contributes to emotional health.
A lack of sleep has shown a ‘dysfunction in the neural circuitry‘, which basically means that it can trigger abnormalities when processing an emotional response and lead to depression.

Studies on insomnia and mental health

How lack of sleep can affect your mental health
(Picture: Liberty Antonia Sadler for Metro.co.uk)
Studies have shown that 40% of adults with primary insomnia (insomnia that’s not a result of a mental health condition) also meet the criteria for a psychiatric disorder.
And people suffering insomnia are three times more likely to develop a mental illness than people who sleep well.
When healthy individuals are subjected to sleep deprivation, they showed an altered response to negative images and even a negative response to neutral images.
Individuals also reported a subjectively negative mood and decreased alertness.
Essentially, not getting enough sleep can have serious implications on your mental health.

Effects of sleep deprivation on your life

How lack of sleep can affect your mental health
(Picture: Liberty Antonia Sadler for Metro.co.uk)
Sleep deprivation can severely impact work, social and family life.
Lack of sleep can lead to serious problems with attention, alertness, concentration, judgement, reasoning, memory and problem solving, meaning driving while fatigued is particularly dangerous.
As well as mental health problems, insomnia can contribute to developing heart disease, stroke and diabetes.
In our personal lives, sleep deprivation can lead to a lower libido, problems with skin and weight gain.

Treating insomnia and mental health

How lack of sleep can affect your mental health
(Picture: Liberty Antonia Sadler for Metro.co.uk)
Research has shown that if insomnia and mental health problems exist together, it is important to treat both.
If only the mental health condition is treated, there is likely to be residual insomnia.
Whether insomnia has contributed to mental illness development or it’s just a symptom, there is hope in both being treated.
Writer: Frances Coleman-Williams


This post first appeared on Grabey | Weird News, Funny News, Strange News, Anything, please read the originial post: here

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