Getting just six hours, or less, sleep a night raises people’s risk of depression by up to 80 percent, new research suggests.
Women are particularly sensitive to the effects of insomnia, which the researchers believe may be due to their hormones making them more at risk of depression anyway.
Research released earlier this year by Binghamton University suggested insomniacs are less able to overcome negative thoughts or disengage from upsetting emotions than those who get sufficient shut eye.
Up to 25 percent of adults in the US struggle to sleep, while around seven percent suffer from depression every year.
The National Sleep Foundation recommends people get between seven and nine hours shut eye a night.
Getting just six hours sleep a night raises people’s risk of depression by up to 80% (stock)
DOES HORMONAL BIRTH CONTROL INCREASE WOMEN’S RISK OF DEPRESSION?
Hormonal birth control does not increase women’s risk of depression, research suggested in February 2017.
Contrary to popular belief, contraceptive pills, implants or injections do not make women more likely to suffer from the mental-health condition, a study found.
‘Based on our findings, this side effect shouldn’t be a concern for most women, and they should feel comfortable knowing they’re making a safe choice.’
The researchers blame platforms such as social media for making contraception complications seem more common than they are.
Dr Worly said: ‘We live in a media-savvy age where if one or a few people have severe side effects, all of a sudden, that gets amplified to every single person.
‘The biggest misconception is that birth control leads to depression. For most patients that’s just not the case.’
The scientists add, however, certain women are at a greater risk of the mental-health disorder and should be monitored closely.
Dr Worly said: ‘Adolescents will sometimes have a higher risk of depression, not necessarily because of the medicine they’re taking, but because they have that risk to start with.
‘For those patients, it’s important that they have a good relationship with their healthcare provider so they can get the appropriate screening done – regardless of the medications they’re on.’
The researchers reviewed thousands of studies investigating the link between contraceptives and people’s mental health.
Such studies included various methods of contraception, including injections, implants and pills.
Participants in the trials were made up of teenagers, women with a history of depression and those who had given birth in the past six weeks.