Everyone is familiar with how good you feel after a great night’s sleep.
You stretch and get out of bed, full of strength and energy ready to start another full and rewarding day. The physical benefits are immediately obvious! But what about your mental and emotional state?
Many people don’t realise how getting enough quality sleep can be just as important for your mental health and wellbeing as it is for your body.1
Research has shown that there is a link between sleep and mental health,2 which is why quality sleep is considered a significant contributor to maintaining good mental wellness, emotional stability and brain functionality.
Mental health refers to our emotional, psychological, and social well-being.3
While the term is often associated with discussions about mental illnesses, mental health is actually about the general state of our emotions and mental functions.
The World Health Organization (WHO) defines mental health as “a state of well-being in which every individual realises his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his community.”4
As a high functioning person, the goal is to strive to look after your mental health so you can continue to enjoy every day with your family, friends and colleagues.
In a day-to-day context, your mental health affects how you think, feel, and act, and can determine how you handle stress, interact with others and make decisions. Maintaining good mental health is equally as important at every stage of your life, from childhood and adolescence, all the way through adulthood.
If you recall the WHO definition above, these are all pretty compelling reasons why good mental health is so important.
Not only can good mental health make you feel more positive, alert and content with life, high levels of mental health are also associated with improved levels of creativity, productivity and an increased capacity to learn.5
You may also have a better sense of self-esteem and be more outgoing in social situations.6
After all, when you feel great, you may tend to be more confident about all aspects of your life.
Studies have shown that good quality sleep is important in maintaining good mental health. Think back to times when you’ve awoken and felt well-rested – how much clearer was your mind, your emotions and your overall mood?
Although the relationship between sleep and mental health is not completely understood, it’s generally accepted that getting a good night's sleep can help your mental and emotional resilience against mental illnesses such as depression and anxiety7. It’s believed that during the REM (Rapid Eye Movement) cycle of sleep, your mind begins to dream and it’s at this stage during the night which contributes to emotional health. Unfortunately, disruptions in sleep can interrupt these cycles which can impair thinking and emotional regulation.8
But sleep doesn’t just ward off risks of mental illness; it also helps improve general mental functions as well. For example: throughout your day, your brain is taking in new information and responding to all kinds of stimuli. Then at night, sleep gives your brain the downtime to consolidate and process this information, and commit it to memory so that it’s accessible in the future when required.9
Therefore, to look after your mental health, it’s important to ensure that getting restful slumber each night is a priority.
Getting enough quality sleep every night can offer you a lot of positive benefits towards living a happy, fit and healthy life every day. This includes maintaining good mental well-being too.
While everyone’s mental health is different, it’s important to ensure that you’re getting adequate sleep to keep your mind, mood and emotions in good condition.
If you are having problems sleeping, try our quick online sleep assessment to better understand how to improve your restful state and overall health.
The assessment is simple and only takes 60 seconds. It will ask you a series of simple questions designed to provide you with more information and conveniently sends your results to you via an email.
Awaken your best by trying the online sleep assessment.
ResMed is a global leader in sleep technology that has its origins right here in Australia. Our goal is to provide people with the means to awaken their best and enjoy healthier lives by promoting good sleep habits and creating awareness for sleep disorders such as sleep apnea.
Source: Mood and Sleep. Better Health. Healthy Living, Victoria State Government.
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