How long you should sleep to improve depression and stress

Korean researchers recently published a study in the Korean Journal of Family Medicine, showing a connection between sleep duration and stress levels.

Researchers collected data for nearly 9,000 Koreans, measuring sleep duration, depression symptoms, and stress severity. They then divided the individuals into 7 groups based on how much they regularly slept:

  1. 4 or fewer hours of sleep per night
  2. 5 hours of sleep per night
  3. 6 hours of sleep per night
  4. 7 hours of sleep per night
  5. 8 hours of sleep per night
  6. 9 hours of sleep per night
  7. 10 or more hours of sleep per night

What they discovered was that those with 5 hours of sleep or less had poorer mental health than those who slept for at least 7 hours or more each night:

  • Higher depression symptoms
  • Higher stress severity
  • Lower life quality related to anxiety or depression

The researchers concluded that 7 or 8 hours is an appropriate length of time to sleep every night:

“Our results suggest that an appropriate sleep duration of 7 or 8 hours (and possibly 9 hours) per night for adults, as stated in recent consensus recommendations, and maintaining a healthy sleep duration may be important for maintaining mental health.”

Getting enough sleep is critical for maintaining our mental health.