Our mood is important because it can be an indicator of emotional health. There are a virtual anomaly of things that will affect our mood. Slight variations in our mood are normal, however, violent mood swings are not. Sudden, irrational mood changes can indicate an illness. Since our mood is a part of our emotional health, there are a number of things we can do to maintain our over-all well-being. There are many factors that can alter our mood. For instance, sleep deprivation will often leave us feeling down-trodden and short-tempered. A disturbance in our sleep cycle can encourage poor sleep quality. Some studies have shown poor sleep quality to be a precursor for depression and a whole host of other personality disorders. In contrast, sleeping in a dark cool room encourages the deep REM sleep that we need for our brains to recover from the day’s activities. This allows us to wake feeling refreshed, rejuvenated, and ready to conquer the day.
Many different studies indicate that the weather probably affects our mood as well. A gloomy rainy afternoon is much more likely to encourage feelings of depression or discouragement. On the other hand, sunshine is a motivator. Pleasant weather usually makes us feel more positive about things. This can most likely be linked to sun exposure. Sun exposure promotes the production of vitamin D which has a number of positive effects on our bodies. In addition, it also encourages our brain to release endorphins, or feel-good hormones.
Exercise also has a lasting effect on our mood. People who exercise regularly tend to eat less sugar and processed foods. Some studies have indicated a link between eating too much processed foods and depression. Regular exercise also encourages our brain to release those feel good endorphins. Additionally, it reduces the negative effects of stress, so exercise for a healthier attitude.
There are some things beyond our control that will affect our mood. For instance, a thyroid disorder can sometimes lead to a very short temper. Attention Deficit Hyper-Activity Disorder or Premenstrual Syndrome can also have a leave us feeling crabby and short tempered. These are things that may require a doctor’s attention to be corrected.
If you are noticing a hard time staying chipper, run through the checklist. Make sure that you are eating a proper diet, exercising regularly, and getting plenty of sleep. Maintaining good posture and getting about twenty minutes of sun exposure daily will also help. If you are doing all of these things and still experiencing the moody blues, it may be time to see a doctor.