I am a severe insomniac. I've always been an insomniac, and I suspect I always will be. While I have mostly adjusted to getting very few hours of sleep each night, I still feel the effects of it, especially when that sleep is restless or even more sporadic than usual. Sometimes, these effects include an increasingly moody attitude — a result that is apparently rather common among women who don’t get enough rest.
It's no secret that millions of Americans don't get enough sleep. Stress, money troubles and medical conditions can all lead to a lack of rest, which can then cause more bodily issues. Scientists at Duke University say that women actually suffer more than men when it comes to not getting enough sleep, raising females’ risks for heart disease, blood clots, psychological issues and depression. In fact, researchers say that women can simply be in more pain when they wake up than men are, thus causing a potential rift between partners.
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"We found that women had more depression, women had more anger, and women had more hostility early in the morning," said sleep expert Dr. Michael Breus. He recommended taking naps, but only if they are 25 or 90 minutes long; any other length, he says, will only result in worse feelings.
My own insomnia has often made it difficult to have people I'm dating sleep over, as I tend to go to bed extremely late. For the past several months, I've had to wake up at exactly 5:30 AM for work, so my schedule's been a bit more regulated, but I still have issues not feeling super grumpy when I wake up so early and didn't manage to snag enough shuteye.
Also, because I lack sleep, I often get terrible dreams (as many insomniacs do), which leads to any rest I have being disturbed. In fact, one of my college boyfriends had to sleep on the couch multiple times because he couldn't deal with how much I twitch and moan during my sleep, as well as how little I slept in the first place. I've also had more than one significant other tell me that I get really moody when I'm first waking up (even when not particularly aware of my surroundings), which has taken a lot of time to try to correct.
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When we lose sleep, it's hard not to lose our tempers, too. So, while I would love to say that getting more sleep is your answer, I also realize that it's not always feasible for many of us, whether it's due to medical issues, chronic pain or simply not having enough time between finishing and restarting work. Keep Reading ...
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