Women, Men & Sleep


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Women are more likely to suffer sleep disorders that are gender related. Due to hormone cycles, women are more likely to suffer from insomnia, and there are increased reports of Sleep Apnoea after menopause. Women are also twice as likely to suffer from disruptive conditions such as stress and anxiety and all of these factors contribute to disruptive sleeping patterns and proneness to sleeping disorders.

Menstrual Cycle & Sleep

Due to the hormones of a woman constantly changing with each month, many women find at least 2.5 nights of sleep each month are disrupted. The increase of oestrogen and progesterone affect moods, temperature and so on. These factors mean women find it harder to sleep and many will report feeling tired and lacking energy. Even though some women do not suffer from pre-menstrual symptoms, they are still likely to suffer from disruptions to their night’s sleep. Unfortunately, this is obviously a natural cycle that women will go through and if the disrupted nights occur in the pre-menstrual period then not a lot can be changed. Symptoms of this kind of disruption are nightmares, not waking up at the usual time in the morning and increased awakenings during the night which are accompanied with more active thinking than usual. However, it is important that they do not let these disturbances become a stress as it can only worsen the disruption to their sleep and develop into a sleeping disorder.

Oral Contraceptives & Sleep

Oral contraceptives can also affect normal sleeping patterns, and if you find that since taking a certain kind of oral contraceptive your sleeping cycle is affected then it may be a good idea to consult your doctor over what alternatives there are.

Men & Sleep

Many men suffer sleep problems due to the hectic nature of their lifestyles, and the fact that they associate sleep with a function that merely needs completing at the end of the day. Underestimating the importance that sleep provides for their mentality and physicality. If this poor amount of sleep is continued for a long period of time, the effects will begin to be noticed in changing attitudes, fatigue and disinterest in daily activities. In addition, many of us will associate men and sleep with snoring and whilst this is generally not a cause for concern, if their partner notices a change in breathing pattern or shortness of breath or no breath for a few seconds or more, then this matter needs investigating. The causes of this could be obstructive sleep apnoea. It is important that men, like women maintain a healthy sleeping habit and avoid stimulants etc before sleeping. If you are suffering from disturbed sleep it would be advised to try adopting a healthy sleeping pattern to try and eradicate fatigue and mental tiredness during the day. If this does not help, then your sleep disruption will need investigating further to see if it is the onset or cause of a sleeping disorder.


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