Women are more likely than men to experience insomnia. Certain phases of the menstrual cycle, pregnancy, and menopause can all contribute uniquely to women’s sleep troubles. Sometimes, these biological changes disrupt sleep, but then unhealthy sleep habits maintain the pattern.
How to improve sleep
Here are some steps you can take to improve your sleep:
- If your insomnia is caused by hormonal changes and hot flashes, keep your room temperature cool and comfortable, and have a glass of water, a change of pajamas and an extra pillowcase by the bed if you sweat during the night.
- For insomnia during pregnancy, keep multiple pillows on hand during the night. Try sleeping on your side with one pillow at your back, one between your legs, and one to rest your arms on. Limit your fluid intake during the evening.
- For many women, insomnia is linked with depression. Relaxation exercises can help, but it’s important to see your doctor or a therapist to address these symptoms as well.
- There are both medical and nonmedical treatment options for insomnia. Ask your doctor if they may help.
Christina Applegate’s personal insomnia story
Emmy® Award-winning actress Christina Applegate has teamed up with Merck to help educate the millions of Americans struggling with sleep. An insomnia sufferer for much of her adult life, Applegate is sharing her personal experience to inspire others to learn more about how to get the sleep they need.