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

By Satya Raj | The Essence of Life

Science has confirmed that women have more complex brains, which suggests that they need more sleep. Professor Jim Horne, director of the Sleep Research Centre at Loughborough University has a specific explanation on the importance of sleeping.

According to Jim Horne: “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, has a specific explanation on the importance of sleeping. The professor also wrote the book Sleepfaring: A Journey Through The Science of Sleep.

“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.”

“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.”

Women need more than 8 hours

Yes, we know that it is highly recommended that you sleep at least 8 hours, and 7 hours usually suffice, but Professor Horne explains that women’s brain “wired differently from men’s and are more complex, so their sleep need will be slightly greater.”

What makes woman’s brain more complex?

Unlike men, women are used to do multi-tasking, and expose their brains to more strenuous activities. This means that women’s brain needs more time to recover completely, and sleeping is the best way to achieve that.

What happens to Tired Men?

Professor Horne explained that man who do jobs that involve decision-making need more sleep than an average man, but still less than an average woman.

How to improve your sleep quality

There are many ways to get a good night’s sleep. But, these tips may not work for each of you, because we are all different.

Routine sleep — Set a sleep routine, so the brain recognizes the need to slow down and relax. In this way you will sleep much better at night.

Avoid Stimulating Foods — Some foods act as stimulants, and you need to avoid these before you go to bed. This involves caffeine in coffee, theobromine in cacao or chocolate, and sugar. These stimulants affect your good night’s sleep, and often lead to insomnia.

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