Restless Nights for Women

By: Kristen Ross
By: Kristen Ross

Having restless nights? Feeling plain exhausted during the day?

If you're a woman and answered yes to either or both of the above, you're not alone.

The National Sleep Foundation reports that more than half of American women aren't getting a good night's rest consistently throughout the week.

But why women and not men?

"Women tend to sleep lighter and your slow wave sleep decreases with age," said Sandy Brott-Garnar of the St. Joseph Center for Sleep Medicine, "and with women and their hormones, the way they change you get less. So they don't get as much sleep a lot of times as men do."

Officials say women's sleep is affected by their menstrual cycle, pregnancy, and even raising kids. That, plus work, equals exhaustion.

"We can go 24 hours or try to go 24 hours and a lot of people do," said Brott-Garnar. "And people need to realize they really need to protect their sleep, especially women, because we have all these things going on in our lives."

Stress can also keep women up at night, and not getting enough sleep can eventually lead to a string of health problems.

"They can have heart attacks, strokes, and as a result of being to sleepy and tired, they're less active and they gain weight," said Brott-Garnar.

There are several solutions women can try to get their sleeping patterns back on track.

"Sometimes it helps to go to a doctor to go ahead and help with these different conditions and sometimes it's just a matter of getting a good routine down," said Brott-Garnar.

It's a routine that officials say should consist of going to bed and waking up at the same time.


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