Gender Differences in Polysomnographic Sleep in Young Healthy Sleepers

Department of Psychology, Wesleyan University, मिडलटाउन, Connecticut, United States
Chronobiology International (Impact Factor: 3.34). 02/2005; 22(5):905-15. DOI: 10.1080/07420520500263235
Source: PubMed


Middle-aged and elderly populations exhibit gender differences in polysomnographic (PSG) sleep; however, whether young men and women also show such differences remains unclear. Thirty-one young healthy sleepers (16 men and 15 women, aged 18 to 30 yr, mean+/-SD, 20.5+/-2.4 yr) completed 3 consecutive overnight sessions in a sleep laboratory, after maintaining a stable sleep-wake cycle for 1 wk before study entry. Standard PSG sleep and self-rated sleepiness data were collected each night. Across nights, women showed better sleep quality than men: they fell asleep faster (shorter sleep onset latency) and had better sleep efficiency, with more time asleep and less time awake (all differences showed large effect sizes, d=0.98 to 1.12). By contrast, men were sleepier than women across nights. Both men and women demonstrated poorer overall sleep quality on the first night compared with the subsequent 2 nights of study. We conclude young adult healthy sleepers show robust gender differences in PSG sleep, like older populations, with better sleep quality in women than in men. These results highlight the importance of gender in sleep and circadian rhythm research studies employing young subjects and have broader implications for women's health issues relating to these topics.

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    • "This is also pertinent to circadian rhythm sleep disorders (CRSDs), and an individual's preference for morningness or eveningness is relevant to their sleep scheduling. The morningness–eveningness questionnaire (MEQ) was developed to assess diurnal preference [12], and it has been used to identify morning and evening types [13] [14] [15] [16] [17]. Second, the RDC also specifies that the timing of sleep is stable. "
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    • "At the same time secular trends of curtailed duration of sleep to fewer hours per day across westernized populations (Akerstedt & Nilsson 2003) has led to increased reporting of fatigue, tiredness and excessive daytime sleepiness (Bliwise, 1996). It is of interest that whilst some studies indicate that women may have better sleep than men in general (Lindberg et al, 1997; Goel et al, 2005), they also report a larger difference in the estimated time of sleep that they believe they require and the actual sleep time they achieve than men. This might indicate that their sleep debt (amount of sleep deprivation) is higher in women than in men (Lindberg et al, 1997). "

    Sleep Disorders, 03/2012; , ISBN: 978-953-51-0293-9
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    • "Studies show that women's sleep differs in many respects from that of men. For example, Goel and colleagues showed that women had better sleep quality, i.e., longer sleep time, shorter sleep-onset latency and higher sleep efficiency [2]. But women tend to report more sleep difficulties than men. "
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