Do Women Need more Sleep than Men? Study

First Posted: Dec 22, 2013 07:52 PM EST

A recent study conducted by researchers from Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, suggests that women who undergo a lot of stress--including mental and physical stimulus--may require more sleep than men, in general.

A lack of sleep or relaxation has been linked to a higher risk of heart disease, psychological issues, depression and stroke and inflammation markers.

According to sleep expert Dr. Michael Breus, he also explains that women, unlike men, may literally be in pain when they wake up due to higher levels of inflammation.

In the study, men showed no increased risk of developing the ailments that affect women when they are sleep deprived.

"We found that women had more depression, women had more anger, and women had more hostility early in the morning," said Dr Breus, via The Australian.

In order to prevent this, Dr. Breus suggests that taking naps can help with such issues. However, he also warns that naps should only be in 25 to 90 minute increments. Longer periods can cause you to feel more sleepy, unforutnately.

"One of the major functions of sleep is to allow the brain to recover and repair itself," said Professor Jim Horne, director of the Sleep Research Centre at Loughborough University, England, via the news organization."During deep sleep, the cortex - the part of the brain responsible for thought, memory, language and so on - disengages from the senses and goes into recovery mode.

"The more of your brain you use during the day, the more of it that needs to recover and, consequently, the more sleep you need.

"Women tend to multi-task - they do lots at once and are flexible - and so they use more of their actual brain than men do. Because of that, their sleep need is greater.

"A man who has a complex job that involves a lot of decision-making and lateral thinking may also need more sleep than the average male - though probably still not as much as a woman."

What do you think?

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