The Link Between Sleep and Mental Well-Being

By Claire Gillespie
Reviewed by Susan Ko, Ph.D.
March 24, 2023
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As mental and emotional well‑being become a priority for many of us, it’s tempting to turn to others for help keeping it on track. Although options like therapy, support groups, and yoga classes can be extremely valuable, don’t underestimate the power that your everyday lifestyle can have on your well‑being—and that includes sleep.

Quality sleep is a vital component of your physical and emotional health. The relationship between sleep and mental well‑being is well documented. In fact, research findings published in 2018 in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health used a cross-sectional survey of 2,495 full-time final-year university students in China to suggest a strong association between sleep quality and psychological well‑being.

The Effects of Sleep on Mood and Emotional Well-Being

Some people might be lucky enough to bounce out of bed feeling great after only a few hours of good sleep, but most of us feel the adverse effects of a restless night. “Poor sleep can make us more irritable, less patient, and more easily upset,” says Janet Kennedy, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist and sleep specialist based in New York City.