PhD student, Karolinska Institutet
How does sleep loss impact our ability to socialise?
We know that not getting enough sleep can effect the way you think and feel about the world around you. But did you know that it can also change the way you behave? Recent research has revealed that sleep loss makes you more likely to blame others when things go wrong, become impulsive, and less trusting. But what effects can this have on person-to-person social interaction. This is what my research focuses on.
To the right I have added a number of articles that are relevant to my area of research. These focus not only on the emotional changes that happen to people when they don't sleep enough (or have bad quality sleep), but also on the behavioural changes that happen.
Abstract: Theoretical models suggest a positive relationship between sleep quality and individuals' ability to regulate emotion. However, few studies have empirically tested this hypothesised link using standardised laboratory measures of emotion-regulation ability. The present research examined the relationship between sleep quality and the ability to implement a type of emotion regulation that has particularly important implications for psychological health: cognitive reappraisal (cognitively reframing an emotional event so as to dampen its impact). To do so, 156 participants (86 male) reported on their past week's sleep quality. Their ability to implement cognitive reappraisal (CRA) was then measured with a standardised laboratory challenge. Participants with poorer self-reported sleep quality exhibited lower CRA, even after controlling for fourteen potential key confounds (e.g., age, negative affect, mood disorder symptoms, stress). This finding is consistent with the idea that poorer sleep quality impairs individuals' ability to engage in the crucial task of regulating negative emotions.
Pub.: 03 Oct '12, Pinned: 28 Aug '17
Abstract: Changes in sleep patterns negatively influence some emotional responses, but their effects on facial expressiveness identification are unclear. To investigate these effects, 21 young, healthy, male volunteers of intermediate chronotype evaluated emotional expressiveness of faces depicting 6 basic emotions in 5 emotional gradients every 4 h over 36 h of continuous wakefulness. To measure attention and mood we used the Psychomotor Vigilance test and the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule Expanded, respectively. We found effects of emotional gradient for all types of emotions (100% > 80% > 60% > 40% > 20%) during all tested periods, with no indications of circadian effects. The only emotional rating to be affected was disgust, which was progressively blunted throughout the experiment. This effect did not parallel homeostatic and circadian changes in mood, alertness or attention. We conclude that identifying disgust on facial photographs is particularly sensitive to lack of sleep irrespective of sleep-induced changes in mood and attention in males.
Pub.: 23 Dec '15, Pinned: 28 Aug '17
Abstract: Disordered sleep has been linked to impaired emotional functioning in healthy and depressed individuals. Little is known, however, about how chronic sleep problems influence emotional reactivity in everyday life. Participants with major or minor unipolar depressive disorder (n = 60) and healthy controls (n = 35) reported on sleep and emotional responses to daily life events using a computerised Experience Sampling Method. We examined whether impaired sleep quality influenced emotional reactivity to daily events, and if this relationship was altered by unipolar mood disorders. Among healthy individuals, sleep difficulties were associated with enhanced negative affect (NA) to unpleasant events and a dulled response to neutral events. However, among mood-disordered persons, sleep difficulties were associated with higher NA across all types of everyday life events. Impaired sleep quality differentially affects daily life emotional reactions as a function of depression.
Pub.: 13 Jan '16, Pinned: 28 Aug '17
Abstract: Disordered sleep is strongly linked to future depression, but the reasons for this link are not well understood. This study tested one possibility - that poorer sleep impairs emotion regulation (ER), which over time leads to increased depressive symptoms. Our sample contained individuals with a wide range of depression symptoms (current depression, N = 54, remitted depression, N = 36, and healthy control, N = 53), who were followed clinically over six months and reassessed for changes in depressive symptom levels. As predicted, maladaptive ER mediated both cross-sectional and prospective relationships between poor sleep quality and depression symptoms. In contrast, an alternative mediator, physical activity levels, did not mediate the link between sleep quality and depression symptoms. Maladaptive ER may help explain why sleep difficulties contribute to depression symptoms; implications for interventions are discussed.
Pub.: 04 Nov '16, Pinned: 28 Aug '17
Abstract: How does a lack of sleep affect our brains? In contrast to the benefits of sleep, frameworks exploring the impact of sleep loss are relatively lacking. Importantly, the effects of sleep deprivation (SD) do not simply reflect the absence of sleep and the benefits attributed to it; rather, they reflect the consequences of several additional factors, including extended wakefulness. With a focus on neuroimaging studies, we review the consequences of SD on attention and working memory, positive and negative emotion, and hippocampal learning. We explore how this evidence informs our mechanistic understanding of the known changes in cognition and emotion associated with SD, and the insights it provides regarding clinical conditions associated with sleep disruption.
Pub.: 19 May '17, Pinned: 28 Aug '17