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Sleeping Under Six Hours Linked to Heavier Periods in Women

written by / November 19, 2021
Sleeping Under Six Hours Linked to Heavier Periods in Women

A new study published in the Journal of Sleep Research has discovered that women who sleep less than 6 hours a night are more likely to suffer from heavy menstrual bleeding and irregular periods than those who sleep 7–9 hours.

Fatigue, trouble concentrating, and drowsiness are just part of the adverse effects of sleep deprivation. However, popular science often fails to mention that lack of sleep is also detrimental to women’s health on an entirely different level. 

Namely, women of reproductive age need regular sleep to maintain a harmonious change in hormone levels each month. If they do not meet that need, they risk decreased infertility in addition to diabetes, weight gain, and other chronic diseases. 

According to the study, heavier menstrual bleeding and feeling fatigued were 70% more likely to affect women that slept less than six hours a night. Their likelihood of experiencing irregular periods was also much higher—by 44%. 

Many people are not aware that heavy menstrual bleeding is by no means harmless because it can lead to blood loss, anemia, and therefore to irregular heartbeat, or even more severe heart problems. What’s more, women who don’t get enough sleep are more likely to report feeling stressed and depressed.

Let’s not forget that on their period, women are less likely to get a good night’s sleep due to cramping and the need to change hygienic products. To make things even harsher, women’s sleep is also disrupted in the days leading up to menstrual bleeding, due to various hormonal changes. 

So, if they wish to ease their discomfort during those days of the month, women should sleep at least seven hours per day. Also, they would probably boost the quality and duration of their rest with comfort-boosting aids like knee or stomach pillows, and similar useful products. 

Also, since bleeding can be accompanied by lower back pain as well, sleeping on a suitable mattress for back pain can help women tackle this issue and improve their quality of life.

Marija Kovachevska is a content writer at, Biochemist and Activist. After obtaining her BSc in Biochemistry and Physiology she changed her microscope for content research tools and continued researching in the fields of Medicine, Biology, and Communication. Her insatiable curiosity flare drove her to become a “content scientist writer” as she likes to say. Reality fascinates her and facts and statistics are a must-have feature in her articles. Fluent in English and French, she is a volunteer and communication associate for several non-profit organizations. French culture and handcrafting are her passion, but in her free time, she indulges in long walks and traveling, or as she likes to say “experiencing the inexperienced.”

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