Sleep and Mental Health
Why does sleep matter?
Our mental health challenges affect our sleep, and our sleep (especially lack of) has an impact on our mental health. According to Sleep and Mental Health, an article from Harvard Medical School, researchers have found that sleep deprivation can impair thinking, memory, learning and emotion regulation which may contribute to restlessness, hyperactivity and difficulty concentrating. Those experiencing mental health symptoms are also at higher risk for sleep problems which can also have a negative impact on our immune system and overall physical health.
Making healthy lifestyle changes like creating an evening routine, eating nutritious meals, staying physically active and using mindfulness techniques can help improve sleep quality over time.
Taking time to unplug from technology is important when creating a sleep routine but there are some helpful apps to aid in relaxation and creating a sense of calm. Mental Health America offers excellent strategies and tips for improving sleep as part of their “Ten Tools” to feel stronger and more hopeful. You can also unwind with our Mindful Moments Web Series – an educational and interactive resource for families who want to learn more about relaxation and mindfulness practices.
Learn how to help children and youth develop a sleep routine
- Quick Tips: Improving Sleep for Children with Autism from Autism Speaks
- Parents Guide to Teenages and Sleep from Child Mind Institute