Mental health

New tools to help those “waking up on the wrong side of the bed”.

30 Sep 2021

We all know that sleep affects your mental wellbeing. That’s why Te Hiringa Hauora | Health Promotion Agency is sharing new tools and resources to help you learn more about how you, and your family, can sleep better and feel more rested.

Sleep is closely connected to mental and emotional health. But it’s not straight forward. Some people find they can’t sleep at all, while others find they can’t stop sleeping. The relationship between the two is complex and affected by many things, but there is good reason to believe that improving sleep can benefit your mental wellbeing.

Improving Sleep is the newest tool in the Small Steps digital tool kit developed by Te Hiringa Hauora in partnership with social enterprise, Clearhead. Improving Sleep is a quiz that helps you to identify possible problem areas in your sleep cycle. At the end you’ll be given some healthy sleep tips to try, which are designed to suit you and your lifestyle.    

Small Steps supports people to take small steps on their journey to improved wellbeing. It offers ideas on managing stress, calming the mind and lifting your mood.

“Sleeps like a baby” is a saying with an impact on many parents’ mental health. Sometimes a baby will do anything but sleep. This is common and can result in stress or anxiety. Help is needed for both baby and the family so that everyone can get much needed rest.

Manaaki Tamariki: Kia au tō moe promotes the importance of sleep for young pēpē and tamariki aged 0 to 2-years-old, by offering tips on safe and healthy sleep. The development of good sleep patterns begins in childhood and can lay the foundation for good sleep through later childhood and into adulthood.

A video is available for parents and caregivers that provides top tips from mums, dads, grandparents and aunties who have been through it all — from reading babies to sleep and setting up a sleep routine, to discovering sleep is not always ‘child’s play’.

A lullaby is also available in Māori, Samoan, Tongan and English that you can use to calm pēpē, māmā or whoever puts baby to sleep. The lullaby video was filmed with real whānau in South Auckland and shows plenty of tips on how to settle baby and get them ready for a safe, healthy sleep. Adopting safe sleep practices reduces the risk of sudden unexpected death of an infant (SUDI).

Whether you’re seven days or 70-years-old, good quality sleep — which includes deep sleep — is restorative and important to your wellbeing. There are things you can do that help you experience good quality sleep more often.

Health and wellbeing is an ongoing journey — so try out the information and tips, and see what works for you.