Want to have more sex? It’s simple — get more sleep. At least, that’s the conclusion researchers have come to after analyzing the sleep patterns and sexual outcomes of nearly 94,000 women over age 50.
According to the report, women who slept fewer than seven hours each night had less sex than those who slept longer. And it makes sense — who among us feels frisky when we haven’t had a good night’s sleep in days and we’re over-the-top exhausted?
“A study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine demonstrated that sleep apnea has been linked with sexual difficulties, including erectile dysfunction and more global sexual difficulties,” said Debby Herbenick, president of the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors, and Therapists, in an interview with CNN. “And a 2015 study showed that women who slept longer at night were more likely to experience stronger sexual desire the following day.”
So clearly the way to have more sex is to get more sleep — but isn’t that easier said than done?
Actually, the interesting thing about the connection between sex and sleep is that it doesn’t just go one way — having sex will actually help you to sleep more, too, so there are many reasons to do both.
Having sex causes our bodies to produce oxytocin, which lowers our stress hormones and in turn allows us to relax and feel tired. Plus, orgasm causes men’s bodies to produce prolactin, a hormone that promotes sleepiness, and women’s estrogen levels go up after sex, which helps lead to deeper REM sleep.
According to David Kalmbach, a researcher at the University of Michigan Sleep and Circadian Research Laboratory, “The message is that sleep health is important for many areas of our daily living.” He adds, “Good sleep has been shown to improve mood, energy, concentration, overall health, and, now, sexual desire and arousal.”
So hurry up and get to bed so you can, you know, get to bed!