Sleep Disorder and Depression

How are sleep disorder and depression linked?

Disturbed sleep, inability to sleep or insomnia, sleep apnea, etc, are common symptoms associated with depression. On the other hand, persons who are sleep deprived also often slip into depression, mainly because they are deprived of one of the most basic requirement for re-energizing, re-vitalizing, and resting the human body and mind.

Unlike other physiological conditions which can be diagnosed, treated, and cured with the help of various diagnostic tools and remedies, it is sometimes very difficult to test the extent of insomnia and depression in people suffering from the problem.

In addition, the fact one is unable to sleep well at night ends up frustrating people, and they get extremely tense and anxious during sleep hours - this then contributes to further insomnia. A vicious cycle of insomnia, sleep disorder and depression could then result. However, one must also keep in mind the fact that insomnia alone does not necessarily cause depression.

It is advisable to try and treat insomnia through natural methods rather than cultivate the habit of taking sedatives, tranquilizers, and hypnotics. This is because most of these medications are effective only initially but later create dependency, and they could also prove to be extremely fatal to the human body. Taking these medications for longer periods of time can cause serious damage to certain internal organs and their functioning. Extreme caution should thus be exercised while using these medications, and if one can avoid these altogether, then it is all the better.

Alternative healing techniques are found to be extremely helpful in relaxing the body and inducing sleep. Therefore, it might be a good idea for people to explore various alternative therapies to treat insomnia, sleep disorder and depression.

Some successful remedies include acupuncture, essential oil massages, aromatherapy, yoga, meditation, exercise, and music therapy. In addition to these, people who have trouble falling asleep for a period of 5 to 6 hours should try and learn relaxation techniques, which include deep breathing patterns, stop consuming caffeinated beverages, stop obsessing about being unable to sleep, and cultivate the habit of reading something light and interesting while trying to fall asleep.

Further, in dealing with sleep disorder and depression, it is important to stay away from indulging in alcohol and drug abuse, mainly because these will only exacerbate the situation and create dependencies which will introduce more problems than one is already facing.

If none of the above helps and one continues to be sleep deprived, it is advisable to consult a psychologist and go for some therapy, so that one can establish the exact reason for the problem and try and resolve them through therapy sessions.

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