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The complicated relationship between depression and your sleep

Depression can make sleep impossible, or it can make you want to sleep all the time. It's weird, right? (Image: Ella Byworth for

Depression and sleep have complex relationships. Often, said relationship is very all or nothing, with sufferers either their sleep is damaged and disturbed, or find that they are forced to sleep for 17 hours a day.

This can be a bit of a chicken-and-egg situation, because the majority of people with depression will experience sleep disorders, but also a very high percentage of those who experience sleep disorders have depression.

Is one effect after the other? Are they holding hands? Is it possible to have one without the other?

For many people (including me), further investigation about sleep disorders can be the first step to a diagnosis of depression.

When I wake up at 3.45 am every day, Google quickly (on my phone – not a great way to go back to sleep) suggests that I might be depressed and disturbed sleep is often a symptom.

Likewise, a list of search results for 'can't stop sleeping all day' suggest the same diagnosis – but how can one disease have two opposite side effects?

That's because depression is a little whore who can't play by anyone's rules.

Dr Jane Woyka, Principal of the GP School at Harrow Health Care Center, told 'For some people, depression can cause severe insomnia, where patients have trouble sleeping or find that they are very restless often waking up with REM sleep deprivation. , Which is important for recovery.

Kasus In cases of depression and lack of sleep, some patients feel the need to sleep continuously and struggle to stay awake. Insomnia and constant drowsiness are clearly related, so people with depression can get into strange patterns. "

Depression can cause sleep problems, sleep problems can cause depression (Image: Ella Byworth for

Dr Woyka would like to add that although there are many drug options available to help you with any sleep drama, medicine is not really the best choice.

"There are a number of free products that can be used to treat insomnia, which usually contain anti-histamines," he said. Ener Phenergan is a popular choice, and Piriton is often used for fever and drowsiness.

‘For some patients stronger drugs are needed. However, as a doctor, it is not preferred if your patients use these drugs and we are advised to refer them to sleep clinics and psychiatrists to solve the underlying problem. "

More: Health

Ugh, a fundamental problem. You say your mouth is full there, doctor.

Of course, there may be a number of physical ailments that stop you from getting your kip; You might suffer from sleep apnea, or sleepwalk, or be someone who accidentally pokes the eye every five minutes. However, if you are depressed then there may be other factors that contribute to your sleep patterns – it is a very good idea to talk with your doctor about it.

In the meantime, there are some small changes you can try to make to encourage your body to be ready for sleep when you want. Sleep is all about your circadian rhythm; internal processes that regulate your body clock. P.

paying very close attention when you process light and dark can really make a difference – which means putting your cellphone when you are in bed, buddy. Honestly, how many people texted you saying they couldn't sleep? No wonder you have a beam of bright light and all the information in this world is ten inches from your face, friend.

By the way, Dr. Kate Mason, a clinical psychologist, recommends dealing with the following things to make sure you really give yourself the best chance for a decent night's sleep.

Dr. Kate Mason's five tips for sorting out your sleep:

Remove distractions from your bedroom, and make just about sleep

Your bedroom must be a special Zen palace of sleep. Too much noise, light, or disturbance can make sleep more difficult. So, make your room as dark as possible. "

Don't stay in bed if you really don't sleep

‘Don't lie on the bed while flipping, if you can't get up and move to another room. Do something that limits movement such as reading a book or listening to soothing music. Then, when you are ready, return to your room to sleep. In this way, your brain will begin to associate your bed (and bedroom) purely with sleep and not sleep problem. & # 39;

Go to bedtime routine

Ok, this one might be less achievable with work schedules and social life, but if sleep problems really affect you then this is really worth a try.

"Research shows that maintaining consistent sleep time is as important as the length of time you sleep," said Kate. 'Avoid sleeping during the day and don't watch the clock – ask for self-compassion don't tell yourself' I have to sleep now … I will only sleep 2.3 hours' – this will only increase your anxiety. & # 39;

Get outside (not at bedtime)

Resi Depression wants you to stay indoors and make the world closed (and everyone in it). Even though going out may seem like an impossible thing, fight those feelings and get out.

‘Sunlight provides Vitamin D – a great mood enhancer. Not only that, seeing the sun often helps your circadian rhythm recalibrate and return to rhythm.

"If you really can't face the outside world, at least open your curtains and let that day come to you."

If you or a loved one is struggling with mental health, you can find qualified local advisors in your area with the Counseling Directory. Mind mental health charity also offers counseling services, and you can contact Samaritans at 116 123 (English and ROI). The NHS even has a small quiz that you can take. If you can, visit your general practitioner for further advice.

To talk about mental health in a free assessment zone, join your Facebook Mental group.

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