Among womens health issues, sleep deprivation is a legitimate concern,
because it can lead to serious conditions including heart, stroke,
cancer, diabetes, hypertension and/or obesity.
Scientific research has confirmed a connection between insomnia and women's health. But, do we need researchers to tell us how rotten we feel when we didn't get a good night's sleep?
We contribute to our lack of sleep by telling ourselves it's more important to finish a project than pander to our need for sleep. Perhaps, it's time we understand that women aren't managers of the universe. We don't have to do or be everything to everybody.
If you answered, "Yes", you may be suffering from sleep deprivation. If
you have been diagnosed with diabetes, obesity, hypertension, cancer,
heart issues or stroke issues, sleep deprivation could be a contributing
Menopause and Insomnia
Menopause and insomnia is a natural consequence of aging that we will "get over", according to most doctors.
Menopause and Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)
In addition to insomnia causing excessive sleep loss during menopause year, research indicates that women hormones are responsible for Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). In simple terms, OSA results when our estrogen and progesterone levels drop simultaneously with heightened testosterone. Ultimately, we lose muscle tone, which culminates in a blocked airway.
Several indicators lead to the interrelation between menopause, insomnia and obstructive sleep apnea. As we get older, the slightest sound interrupts our sleep. Lower estrogen levels cause hot flashes, which disturb our normal sleep pattern.
Pregnancy and PMS
Sleep research also suggests that when pregnant women hyperventilate, the male hormone amplifies dramatically. So even before menopause, women may experience sleep deprivation due to premenstrual syndrome (PMS).
Check out the talented artists who have help to illustrate this
"Womens Health Issues" page. The top illustration "Woman Napping" is by
See Steven's blog for his other amazing images.
Thanks to Adele Steinberg for her "Most Outrageous Sheep" multimedia art. Photograph:The vital woman at sunrise (see Part Two) is used with permission from Dreamstime.com.