How Men and Women Sleep Differently by guest blogger Christine Huegel - Sleep Expert for Mattress Advisor.com
We all know that men and women tend to do things differently, and this couldn’t be truer when it comes to their sleeping behaviors. Do you ever wonder why your partner’s sleeping habits are significantly different than yours, making it hard to be in sync at night? We’ve got an answer for you! From sleeping habits, positions, and difficulties, we see just how different men and women can be.
Women experience insomnia more than men
Insomnia is one of the most common sleep disorders, which involves the inability to get restful sleep or suffer from an irregular sleep pattern. Research has shown that women experience this significantly more than men.
Why is that? The leading cause of sleeplessness is stress, anxiety, depression, and pain. Women tend to go through all these more than men do. For example, women experience discomforts, pain, and stress during menstruation and pregnancy.
However, men can experience their fair share of sleeplessness as they are more likely to suffer from sleep apnea than women – a condition preventing restful sleep due to difficulty breathing.
Men Sleep Late, Women Wake Early
A man’s biological clock is naturally set one hour later than a woman’s, meaning that they are more likely to stay up later and sleep in longer. Additionally, women have slightly shorter circadian rhythm cycles compared to men – making it easier to wake up and feel ready for the day earlier in the morning than their counterparts.
Sleep Deprivation Impacts Men and Women Differently
Studies show that when women lack proper sleep, they are more prone to negative emotions like depression, anger, or short temper compared to men. To emphasize the importance of proper sleep for women even more, additional research shows that women who experience chronic sleep deprivation have a greater risk of things like heart disease and type-2 diabetes than sleep deprived men.
Men who don’t get enough sleep each night are more likely to experience attention and performance deficits at work and school, as they have a more difficult time coping and recovering from lack of sleep compared to women.
Women get cold feet more than men
Have you ever wondered why many women tend to be tucked into blankets all night while men can sleep soundly with their feet exposed, and hanging off the bed? The nerves responsible for the control of blood flow to the feet and hands are more sensitive in women than men. When it is time to sleep, a woman's blood vessels constrict, thus slowing down the flow of warm blood, leaving the feet freezing. This messes with the women's ability to fall asleep, but it is rarely the case for men.
Men and women may seem to be from different planets in a lot of situations, and sleep is clearly one of them. However, despite their sleeping preferences, many couples are able to enjoy restful sleep with their partners. Sleep is critical to your short term and long-term health, so it’s important to work together to ensure that both individuals in the relationship are getting the quality sleep they need each night. If you’re thinking about a sleep divorce, don’t worry. Many mattresses and bedding accessories are made to allow men and women to coexist during bedtime.
Furthermore, sleep is critical to your short term and long-term health and understanding these differences can not only help you understand your partner better but create solutions to get restful sleep each night.
Verity Allen - BSc, BA, MBAcC, Lic Ac