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How and why does insomnia increase depression.
What can I do to weaken depression and get a good night’s sleep?
That’s a good question, Margaret. Insomnia can increase symptoms of depression in several ways. Lying awake unable to get to sleep often leads to rumination, which itself is associated with depression. In that case, it is often better to invoke the 20-minute rule – if you’re not asleep after 20 minutes then get up and do something such as read a book, for at least half an hour or until you find yourself falling asleep. The loss of deep sleep associated with insomnia can lead to significantly increased daytime fatigue, which itself exacerbates low mood. In that case, keeping up daytime energy with sufficient exercise and a good diet will help; caffeine in small doses may also help with both the fatigue and the mood to a limited extent. Both the depression and the insomnia are worth seeking treatment for – therapy and/or medication – as they tend to mutually reinforce each other. By tacking both together, you will hopefully be able to overcome them and have a higher quality of life. Your GP is probably the first port of call for that.
I wake every hour or so throughout the night. I am very tired during the day to the point of struggling to stay conscious. I have very vivid dreams. I have RLS. I used to suffer with sleep paralysis. I feel I would be ideal for sleep study and need help to find out why my sleep is disturb. I live a few miles from Lincoln. I desperately need help.
Thanks Karen. I’m sorry to hear about your sleep difficulties. We do not currently have a research study in that area, but if we start one I will certainly let you know, as you would be ideal. Meanwhile, I would certainly suggest a trip to your GP for a possible clinical referral if s/he thinks that would be appropriate.
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