Menopause and Sleep

Menopause and Sleep

Menopause is a time of major hormonal, physical and psychological change for women although menopausal symptoms vary from woman to woman. During the  perimenopause or transition phase, a woman's ovaries gradually (over several years) decrease production of estrogen and progesterone. If a woman has her ovaries surgically removed (oophorectomy), periods end abruptly and menopausal symptoms become more severe. One year after menstrual periods have stopped, a woman reaches menopause, on average around the age of 50. From  peri-menopause to post-menopause, women report the most sleeping problems. Most notably, these include hot flashes, mood disorders,  insomniaand sleep-disordered breathing. Sleep problems are often accompanied by  depression and anxiety. 

Generally, post-menopausal women are less satisfied with their sleep and as many as 61% report insomnia symptoms.  Snoring has also been found to be more common and severe in post-menopausal women. Snoring, along with pauses or gasps in breathing are signs of a more serious sleep disorder, obstructive  sleep apnea (OSA).

Changing and decreasing levels of estrogen cause many menopausal symptoms including hot flashes, which are unexpected feelings of heat all over the body accompanied by sweating. They usually begin around the face and spread to the chest affecting 75-85% of women around menopause. Prior to the hot flash, body temperature rises accompanied by an awakening. Hot flashes last on average three minutes leading to less sleep efficiency. Most women experience these for one year, but about 25% have hot flashes for five years. While total sleep time may not suffer, sleep quality does. Hot flashes may interrupt sleep and frequent awakenings cause next-day fatigue.

Clearly seeking medical advise is key in medicating for the above symptoms but you can also make some lifestyle changes to help. Fresh air and exercise along with a healthy diet go without saying.

Wearing natural fabric clothes (cotton, wool, silk) will help in the day but at night you may need more help and this is where wool bedding comes into it's own. At Urban Wool we only use 100% natural, and in most cases organic bedding fabrics. A large percentage of our customer base comes from women suffering with night sweats often followed by chills and have found real comfort in using our range of bedding. Pillows, duvets and mattress toppers come in all sizes. Don't just take our word for it - check our reviews out on Trust Pilot.

If you need help choosing the right weight for you or just some advise call us where we'll be happy to help and of course there is no obligation!