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Is There A Connection Between Sleep And Depression?

connection between sleep and depressionIntroduction

Is your sleep routine off? Are you sleeping less than normal? Are you depressed? Are you wondering if there is a connection between your irregular sleep pattern and your depressed mood? Well, keep reading this article because the answer is yes. There indeed is a relationship between sleep and depression. According to the National Sleep Foundation (2016), “The relationship between sleep and depressive illness is complex – depression may cause sleep problems and sleep problems may cause or contribute to depressive disorders. For some people, symptoms of depression occur before the onset of sleep problems. For others, sleep problems appear first. Sleep problems and depression may also share risk factors and biological features and the two conditions may respond to some of the same treatment strategies. Sleep problems are also associated with more severe depressive illness.” For the purposes of this article, we will focus on how irregular sleeping patterns result in the development of a depressive mood.

There Is a Relationship Between Insomnia And Depression

According to, “Chronic insomnia may increase the risk of developing a mood disorder, such as depression.” Think about it. If you are tired and have not gotten a good night sleep, you are going to have a lack of energy in your daily routine. This, in return, is going to impact your mood. You are going to feel depressed. This is supported by evidence. According to, “In one major study of 10,000 adults, people with insomnia were five times more likely to develop depression.” In addition, indicates that “Difficulty sleeping is sometimes the first symptom of depression. Studies have found that 15 to 20 percent of people diagnosed with insomnia will develop major depression.”

What Can Be Done?

You may be wondering if you are depressed, how can you improve your sleep? Well the answer is quite simple. Set a regular sleep routine. Have a set time for going to sleep and a set time for waking up in the morning. On an even further note, do not even think about hitting the snooze button. Just don’t hit it. You will feel better when you don’t touch it. Trust me on this one.


Despite the relationship between sleep and and a depressed mood, you can still feel better about yourself and lead a healthy lifestyle. Just start by adjusting your sleep routine. You will see the difference in how you feel in no time.

Sleepless guy photo available from Shutterstock

Is There A Connection Between Sleep And Depression?

Lauren Walters

My name is Lauren Walters. I am currently heading into my final semester of graduate school for Mental Health Counseling in the Spring of 2016. Through my own experiences with mental illness, I love to inspire others through my writings and reassure them that they can live healthy, productive lives, despite mental illness. I hope you enjoy my articles. Feel free to comment. I will be sure to respond to you questions and/or comments in a prompt manner. Enjoy!

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APA Reference
Walters, L. (2016). Is There A Connection Between Sleep And Depression?. Psych Central. Retrieved on January 21, 2020, from


Last updated: 1 Mar 2016
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