“Happiness consists of getting enough sleep. Just that, nothing more.” - Robert A. Heinlein
You know the phrase “waking up on the wrong side of bed”? There’s actually a scientific basis to having your mood and mental health affected by your sleep patterns. Sleep is associated with mood, memory, and cognitive function; good sleep can enhance these qualities, but rough sleep can be detrimental.
If you’ve ever gotten an unreasonable amount of sleep before, you’ll know that sleep can impact your mood. But the extent to which this impact reaches is often overlooked. When we sleep, there are different stages of sleep that we cycle through.
One of them, REM sleep, is important for processing emotional information. This means that, when you get less sleep, you spend less time in REM sleep, which means you spend less time processing emotions, especially positive emotions. This influences mood and emotional reactivity and can even influence suicidal ideas or behaviors.
REM sleep also influences memory. Memories go through three different stages: acquisition of new information to the brain, consolidation of memories to make them stable, and recall of stored information to access it. The more quality sleep we get, the better we will perform in all three stages, especially memory consolidation and recall.
Cognitive function is an important part of our life and helps us learn and develop skills. For one, sleep repairs the brain and allows for you to have better attention and concentration. It also supports problem-solving, creativity, and judgement.
In summary, if you want to preserve your memory, improve your mood, and develop your cognitive function, sleeping well is the best way to start.
- Dhisha Kukalakuntla,
Founder & President