Women need more sleep than men, study finds
Who doesn’t like to stay in bed a little longer in the morning or take a nap after lunch to get their strength back?
If we were asked whether there are differences between men and women in the amount of sleep we need, and if we were asked which of the two groups would need more sleep, surely many of us would not imagine that science would eventually discover that there are differences between the two sexes in this regard. According to recent research, women need more sleep for better health and well-being .
Women need more sleep to be healthier
But does this mean that women are lazier than men? Obviously not.
The study seems to indicate that, in order to recover from the fatigue caused by daily activities, women need to sleep 20 minutes more a day . So, bearing this in mind, if you are a man and you sleep next to a woman at night, when you get up in the morning, it is worth it just in case you let her rest a bit more than you do before waking her up.
What was the investigation about?
The research was carried out by the Centre for Sleep Studies at Loughborough University, in the United Kingdom, and concluded that, the more an individual uses his or her brain during the day, the more sleep he or she needs to recover .
It seems that, as women tend to take care of different tasks alternating their work, childcare, housework, shopping… These activities imply a great energy expense for the brain, so they need more sleep. In contrast, men, who even today tend not to be so busy with household chores, have less mental wear and tear.
Now, does that mean that men are lazy? Not really. According to the director of the study, Professor Jim Horne, “The reason for this is that women’s brains are much more complex than men’s.” And he concludes, “women’s brains are wired differently than men’s brains and so they have a greater capacity for concentration, which allows them to keep track of various things at the same time.
According to several studies, on average, an individual needs between 6 and 8 hours of sleep to recover from the day-to-day stress and exhaustion from the activities performed throughout the day. In addition, scientists have also found that insomnia in women is associated with high levels of distress, depression and anger.
How do you know if you’re not getting enough sleep?
Insomnia brings with it serious negative consequences for the person who suffers it, as well as the presence of psychological disorders associated with inadequate rest.
Unfortunately, this is frequent in the times we live in, and many people experience this situation that can lead to serious problems for their health . But what are the warning signs when we don’t get enough sleep? Below you can find a list of 7 signs that warn you that you are not getting enough sleep:
1. Irritability and depression
Research has confirmed that lack of sleep can lead to depression and to being more irritated and in a worse mood than usual. According to a study conducted by the University of Pennsylvania, participants who slept 4.5 hours a day for a period of one week showed a higher level of stress , irritability, sadness and psychological and emotional exhaustion.
2. Difficulty making decisions
Lack of sleep can lead to concentration problems and can affect our mental clarity . That is why, both in study and at work, lack of sleep can cause us to make wrong decisions.
3. Problems with memory
Attention is essential when it comes to storing memories and learning, so if we don’t get enough sleep this mental faculty can be affected . Sleeping between 6 and 8 hours a day is enough to be alert and to take full advantage of our memory capacity.
4. Vision problems
When sleeping, the eyes get more tired, so they are not cleaned and refreshed properly. This has negative consequences on the quality of vision n .
5. Less desire for intimacy
The desire for intimate relationships is affected by the lack of rest, because people who do not sleep enough are more exhausted, sleepy and, in addition, have higher blood pressure .
6. Increases desire to eat more
Sleep deprivation creates an imbalance in our body, which causes the appetite to increase. This is due to the anxiety caused by insomnia, which leads a person to eat more food, especially those with a high fat content . This can lead to an increase in fat tissue .
7. Increased stress
Lack of sleep causes our tolerance to stress to drop . In addition, after a bad night, levels of cortisol, a stress-related hormone, increase.
You can read more about these points in our article: “7 psychological signs that indicate you are not getting enough sleep”
The benefits of napping
Napping brings many benefits to both health and productivity at work.
That is why different companies such as Google, Nike, AOL or The New York Times give their workers time to enjoy this typically Spanish custom in the same workplace as they perform their professional duties. Taking a nap serves to recover energy, be in a better mood, improve learning, improve memory capacity and work better.
Do you want to know more about the benefits of napping? In our article “The 3 psychological benefits of napping” you will find all the information you need.