The quality of your sleep impacts upon your health so finding ways to enjoy a better night’s sleep is essential to remain healthy.
It has been long known that sleep deprivation affects our health, both physically and mentally. The amount of sleep and quality of sleep is an important factor in increasing your risk to developing chronic illness and disease.
Recent research at Carnegie Mellon University and University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (2015) found that people who sleep six hours a night or less are four times more likely to catch a cold when exposed to the virus, compared to those who had more than seven hours sleep a night.
A study by John Hopkins University (2015) found that frequently waking up during the night to be more detrimental to people’s positive moods than getting the same shortened amount of sleep without interruption.
The need to get up during the night to urinate can disturb your sleep, however research has shown regular exercise can reduce nightly bathroom visits.
Sleep deprivation can lead to higher levels of distraction as found by Gloria Mark, a University of California-Irvine informatics professor. Her study found a direct connection among chronic fatigue, worsening mood and greater reliance on Facebook browsing. She also discovered that the less sleep people have, the more frequently their attention switches between different computer screens.
This ties in with loss of productivity, which in turn affects the economy and the efficacy in which sleep deprived people are able to perform their jobs. It can also lead to poor decision making and even arguments ar work.
Researchers Dr Michele Lastella and colleagues Dr Jessica Paterson, Dr Amy Reynolds, and Dr Cathy O’Mullan from Central Queensland University (CQUniversity Adelaide) embarked upon the phase one of a project evaluating the potential of ‘Sex as Sleep Therapy’ in November 2016. Involving 460 adults the project found that 64% enjoyed better sleep after sex, especially if they had had an orgasm. This is due to the release of oxytocin after orgasm, a feel-good hormone which has been said to act as a sedative, reducing the time it takes to fall asleep.
Not getting enough sleep can impact upon your sex life too. Often women experience sleep disturbance during the menopause as a result of hormonal changes and night sweats. New research published in January 2017 in Menopause, the journal of the North American Menopause Society (NAMS) found that disturbed sleep impacted upon levels of sexual satisfaction.
It’s not all doom and gloom however, as one sure fire way to improve your sleep is to have sex!
Sexual intercourse and masturbation
Many people, not just men, fall into a deep sleep after sexual intercourse due to the release of endorphins which lower blood pressure, inducing a state of relaxation. This applies to masturbation too. Many people rely upon masturbating to get a good night’s sleep and it’s more fun than a glass of milk! Frequent masturbation can also help protect men from developing prostate cancer by 22% too.
Too tired for sex
Having spent your childhood resisting going to bed, as an adult we often delay our bedtime to get everything done or spend our evenings slumped in front of the TV, on our mobile phones or computer rather than getting comfy in bed. If you need to get up at 6am, then you need to go to bed by 10pm to ensure that you get to sleep.
A National Sleep Foundation survey (2010) found that nearly 25% of respondents who live with a partner report often being too tired to have sex with that person. Once you have fallen into a rut of having no sex, it can be hard to get back into the routine of having regular sex. Tiredness, rather than a lack of attraction is a legitimate excuse for sex avoidance.
A good night’s sleep, more so than exercise and a healthy diet, keeps our sexual engines humming, says Washington DC sex therapist Barry McCarthy, PhD. “Healthy people who have good sleep patterns are going to be more open to being sexual”.
You feel less tired, therefore more inclined to feel like having sex, which in turn, will help you sleep better.
Good sex can last minutes, not hours
Contrary to popular belief that sex needs to last for hours to be considered good, many couples enjoy satisfying sexual intercourse which last between 3-13 minutes, according to Penn State Erie researchers Eric Corty and Jenay Guardiani (2008).
Some women find sex with men who go for long periods of time can be boring and prefer for it to end quicker, especially if they feel tired. This is when they plan their shopping lists, think about what they have to do the next day and fake their orgasms too!
So just having a quickie before you go to sleep can be as beneficial as spending a long time having sex when you’re tired.
You can make the most of your quickie sex sessions by using a couples’ sex toy too! A cock ring such as Je Joue Mio is a great toy to use as it strengthens and enlarges the penis and has vibrations that both your and your partner can enjoy.
Great sex without intercourse
Having sex doesn’t mean sexual intercourse it can be whatever you want it to be. If you don’t feel like having sexual intercourse, you can still enjoy great orgsams through mutual masturbation, oral sex or using a sex toy which will help you sleep better.
Better sleep, clearer skin
Having sex can improve insomnia and promote better sleep which is beneficial to helping skin repair. Skin repairs itself during sleep, and people who are stressed or sleep deprived tend to be prone to more spot outbreaks. Therefore, having sex and sleeping better can improve your skin and overall body image, increasing your confidence too.
Sleeping naked can boost your sex life and improve your sleep
According to an international study by the US National Sleep Foundation (2014), one in three adults sleep in the nude. Going naked can boost your sex life, improve your quality of sleep and even help you burn calories too.
Having naked skin to skin contact may lead to more sex as snuggling up to each other not only raises your temperature but also your levels of arousal too. Moreover, people who sleep naked have happier, more satisfying relationships.
A study in the UK found that 57% of nude sleepers were happy with their relationship compared to 48% of pyjama wearers, 43% of nightie wearers and 38% of onesie wearers. Even people with body image issues can enjoy more sex by shedding their PJs once they get under the covers.
However, while it is important to avoid getting too hot, you need to make sure you have warm hands and feet to help you sleep.
This also applies to sex too. Although it may not sound very sexy, a University of Groningen study (2005) found that 80% of the couples in their study were able to reach an orgasm when provided with socks to wear in comparison to only 50% that were able to reach a climax without wearing socks.
Sleeping in the nude is healthier for both sexes. In women, it prevents yeast infections from thriving in warm, moist conditions, and for men it keep the testes cool, thus promoting optimal sperm health and increasing fertility.
So rather than popping a sleeing pill, why not improve the quality of your sleep this month by having more sex, it’s much more fun too!