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Why You Need Your Zzzs: How Sleep Affects Mental Health by Brad Krause


As you might expect, ADHD, anxiety, depression, and other problems can lead to sleep issues. Sleep deprivation and poor sleep quality can also exacerbate mental health conditions. In one example, Harvard Health Publishing notes that people with insomnia were 4 times as likely to develop major depression compared to normal sleepers. Likewise, the Anxiety and Depression Association of America says that “people with chronic insomnia are at a high risk for developing an anxiety disorder.” 

Read on for tips to improve your sleep.

Remove Electronics

Start by taking the TV out of your bedroom. Watching TV in your room can delay sleep and the noise can cause you to wake up later in the night. The same goes for phones, tablets, and computers. Not only are your electronic devices a distraction, research indicates the blue light emitted from your devices suppresses the production of melatonin leading to insomnia and restless sleep.

Replace Your Mattress

Your bed is one of the most important sleep aids you can have, so you need a mattress that provides the right support for your sleep position. If you’re not sure what’s best, consider researching memory foam mattresses. Memory foam is not only a popular choice that provides pressure-point relief for most sleepers, but it’s also available in either soft or firm. You can also choose to buy a memory foam mattress that’s flippable, single-sided, hybrid, or foam only.

Avoid Co-Sleeping With Kids

Co-sleeping with your kids can be a great bonding experience, but it can also disrupt your sleep. Jennifer Metter, a certified sleep consultant, says that co-sleeping parents often deal with fragmented sleep. When your sleep gets interrupted often throughout the night, it’s impossible to benefit from the restorative qualities of sleep. If you find you aren’t getting enough quality sleep, it might be time to reconsider co-sleeping.


You may like the comfort of having your dog sleeping in your bed. But your best friend might actually be disrupting your sleep, especially if they’re a large breed. If you find yourself uncomfortable because your pet takes up so much space in the bed, or you often wake up at night because of their movements or noises, consider transitioning your dog to their own space.


Regular exercise can improve heart health, increase strength, and help you maintain a healthy weight. Exercise can also relieve stress and improve sleep quality as well. According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, moderate exercise can help you relax, decompress, and naturally improve sleep quality. Schedule your workout two hours or more before going to sleep. You should also limit the consumption of caffeinated and alcoholic beverages late in the day.

By tweaking your evening habits, replacing your mattress, and removing distractions from your bedroom, you’ll be able to fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer. Sleep and mental health are closely intertwined. By improving our sleep habits, we can be less stressed and live happier lives.


Bio: Brad Krause

Brad Krause created Self Caring after years spent putting his own self-care on the back burner. His goal now is to educate people on the importance of self-care by providing tips and tricks that are easy to implement. For more info on Brad’s self-care mission, visit


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