Women Need More Sleep Than Men Because Their Brains Work Harder, According to Science

According to science, women have more complex brains, therefore they need more sleep. Professor Jim Horne, director of the Sleep Research Centre at Loughborough University displays an elaborate explanation regarding the importance of sleeping, quoting:

“For women, poor sleep is strongly associated with high levels of psychological distress and greater feelings of hostility, depression, and anger,” and “These feelings were not associated with the same degree of sleep disruption in men.”

Professor Jim Horne is an author of the book Sleepfaring: “A Journey Through The Science of Sleep” where he specifically explains the importance of sleeping. Here below are some passages of the book:

“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.”

“This is because women’s brains are wired differently from men’s and are more complex, so their sleep need will be slightly greater. The average is 20 minutes more, but some women may need slightly more or less than this.”

“One of the major functions of sleep is to allow the brain to recover and repair itself. 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.”

Women require more than 8 hours of sleep

Most of us know the fact that the advised amount of sleep is 8 hours a day so that your body functions normally, but in case of women Professor Horne explains that women’s brain is, quoting:“wired differently from men’s and are more complex, so their sleep need will be slightly greater.”

Why is women’s brain more complex?

Contrary to men, women are accustomed to performing multi-tasking thereby they expose their brains to more strenuous activities. Therefore, women’s brain will need more time to recover and repair, and the best way to achieve that is by prolonged sleeping.

What about Tired Men?

Regarding this issue, Professor Horne stated that men who perform jobs that involve important decision-making also need more sleep from the ones that do regular jobs. Yet, they still need less sleep from an average woman.

 What we can do to improve our sleep quality?

There are many ways to acquire good night sleep. However, these tips may not apply to each one of you since we are all different.

  1. Avoid Stimulating Foods –like caffeine in coffee, the obromine in cacao or chocolate, and sugar. They can act as stimulants and affect the good night sleep, often leading to insomnia.
  2. Melatonin — according to experts melatonin aids in sleeping better. Ideal doses would be of 1 to 3 mg of melatonin, preferably an hour before bedtime.
  3. Meditation — a brain of woman works 24hours a day, and because of that many women have troubles sleeping. Therefore, meditation can be of great assistance since it helps the brain settle down and enter into a state of deep relaxation.
  4. Routine sleep — In order to sleep better you can set up a sleep routine by which the brain will recognize the need to slow down and relax. Implementing this can help you to sleep better during night hours.
  5. Yoga — It is the most recommended activity for persons suffering from insomnia as yoga postures prepare the body for a good rest. You can try these six relaxing yoga poses to help you sleep.