Researchers from the American Academy of Sleep Medicine found that women are 50% more likely to feel tired when they wake up in the morning than men.
In a survey conducted by a research organization, 2,000 participants, half of whom were women, answered questions about the quality of their sleep. They were asked “how often do you wake up feeling well rested” and were given five sleep ratings ranging from “never” to “always.”
Overall, among the female participants, 326 people, or 32 percent, said they rarely or never wake up feeling refreshed. But only 21 percent of men, or 207 people, answered the same way. That is, a third of women do not feel well rested compared to about 20 percent of men. By comparison, 292 women (29 percent) said they usually wake up well-rested. And among men, this figure reaches two-fifths (417 respondents, 42%).
There are several theories why women sleep so badly. One is related to the menstrual cycle: before the onset of menstruation, the level of progesterone, a key hormone involved in the cycle, drops rapidly in a woman. This can cause bloating, breast tenderness, and muscle pain that keeps you awake at night, or mood swings that make it difficult to fall asleep. The worst period for sleep is 4–5 days before the onset of menstruation and the first two days of discharge.
Experts also suggested that women’s lack of sleep may be related to childcare, with some mothers continuing to wake up at night even when their children are sleeping. This phenomenon of mothers’ shallow sleep begins after childbirth and does not end immediately when the baby stops waking up at night, as mothers get used to responding to the baby’s needs. Another problem that prevents women from sleeping as well as men is the higher prevalence of snoring among males. It is difficult to sleep well if your bed partner snores, twitches, or sleepwalks.
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