Fact Checked

This NativePath content is medically reviewed or fact-checked to ensure factually accurate information.

With strict editorial sourcing guidelines, we only link to academic research institutions, reputable media sites, and, when research is available, medically peer-reviewed studies. Note that the numbers in parentheses (1, 2, etc.) are clickable links to these studies.

The information in our articles is NOT intended to replace that of a qualified healthcare professional and is not intended as medical advice.

Sorry Gentlemen. Women Do, In Fact, Need More Sleep Than You. Here's Why

The age-old debate of who needs more sleep—men or women—has been ongoing for years, and the answer is finally here. And it’s no surprise that women need more sleep than men.

Generally, women report a greater lack of restful sleep than men do. (1). On average, women sleep 11 minutes longer than men, but they actually need to be sleeping one to two hours longer to feel fully rested (2).

In this article, we'll discuss why women need more sleep than men. And we’ll offer a natural solution if you find yourself restless when your head hits the pillow.

Women Need More Sleep to Replenish Their Hormonal Reserves

In a recent TikTok post, Dr. Patrick Flynn of The Wellness Way suggests that women need 8-10 hours of sleep per night, while men need 7-8 hours of sleep. Flynn attributes this to the fact that women produce significantly more of their daily hormones in their sleep than men do, and thus need deep rest to replenish their hormonal reserves each night. Flynn even offers up an ideal suggested bedtime window: between 9 p.m. and 10 p.m.

@dr_patrick_flynn Women need more sleep then men! This can’t be stressed enough! #sleep #womenshealth ♬ original sound - Dr Patrick Flynn D.C.

Replenishing these hormonal reserves should be a top priority for women of all ages. As hormones help regulate the following (4, 5):

  • Sleep-wake cycle

  • Appetite

  • Growth and development

  • Reproductive functions

  • Mood and behavior

  • Body temperature

  • Blood pressure

  • Fluid and electrolyte balance

Another reason why it’s important that women prioritize filling up their hormonal reserve: Their hormones aren’t the same every day. Menstruation, pregnancy, and menopause all come with major hormonal shifts. All of which can impact a woman’s quality of sleep (3, 6). Women who are menstruating might have a hard time sleeping and feel tired during the day (7). Pregnant women may experience sleep-disrupting mood changes, restless leg syndrome, and sleep apnea (8). 85% of women going through menopause experience hot flashes that disrupt shut-eye. Menopausal women are also at a higher risk of developing sleep apnea (9, 10).

Put simply, if a woman doesn’t sleep well one night, she won’t have the hormone reserves to function effectively the next day. And if her hormones are off from poor sleep, it may throw off her circadian rhythm and dash any hope of getting quality sleep the next night (6).

Other Reasons Women May Need More Sleep Than Men

Reason #1: Stress

“Women need more [sleep] because their hormones are affected by their stressors of the day,” another Wellness Way pro suggested.

Stress causes your body to release cortisol and adrenaline. This depletes other hormones that your body relies on to function smoothly during the day (11). Women are more likely to experience stress and anxiety (12, 13). So those extra hours of sleep are needed to replenish her hormone reserves.

Reason #2: Insomnia

Women are 40% more likely than men to develop insomnia (14). They’re also two times more likely to be diagnosed with anxiety and depression—which are often associated with insomnia (15, 16). These risk factors make quality sleep for women that much more important.

The Bottom Line

Women need more sleep than men to ensure that they’re able to rebuild their hormone reserves every night. Stress depletes hormones, and women report more stress than men, so extra hours of snooze time can help them build those hormones back up.

If you’re having trouble getting quality sleep throughout the night, a natural sleep aid like Collagen PM could help! Uniquely designed to help you fall asleep faster, stay asleep longer, and get deeper, more restorative sleep, Collagen PM combines 10 grams of collagen with four other sleep-promoting ingredients.

As a writer, editor, and wellness seeker, Claire has written for Self, Health, Prevention, CNN, Mic, Livestrong, and Greatist, just to name a few. When she's not writing, she specializes in traveling, getting lost in health-related research rabbit holes, and finding new ways to spoil her cat.

More Sleep

Medical Disclaimer
This content is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide medical advice or to take the place of such advice or treatment from a personal physician. All readers/viewers of this content are advised to consult their doctors or qualified health professionals regarding specific health questions. Neither Dr. Chad Walding nor the publisher of this content takes responsibility for possible health consequences of any person or persons reading or following the information in this educational content. All viewers of this content, especially those taking prescription or over-the-counter medications, should consult their physicians before beginning any nutrition, supplement, or lifestyle program.

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published

Comments must be approved before appearing