Sleep and Sex – Does Less Sleep Mean Less Sex?

Editor's Note: This article has been recently updated with latest information and research studies.
 

Is Sleep the New Sex?

Personally, I enjoy both, and see the value in both of these activities. But it seems that sleep deprivation has more serious consequences. Such as: low energy levels, daytime sleepiness and lower sex drive/interest. The resulting excessive anxiety and tiredness, caused by lack of sleep, will most likely show up as physical dysfunction in the bedroom. Hmm? Well I see that although sleep is not a replacement for a healthy sex life, regular sleep is necessary to keep all aspects of our lives alive and functioning at optimum levels.

When Sleep Problems Cause Sex Problems?

Sleep and Sex

Sleep issues can quickly seep into all aspects of your life, like the workplace, community and intimate relationships. When a person is tired, due to several nights of disrupted sleep, they are cranky, grumpy, irritable and short tempered.

More than 10% of women openly admit that sleep problems/disorders (and their symptoms) has a direct negative impact on their relationships.

One-fourth of couples living together in the United States have been reported as saying that they are too tired to make love to their mate.

Sleep and Sex: How Personal Relationships are Affected

A good night’s sleep is beneficial for many reasons, and feeling confident and physically attractive certainly makes the list of benefits. Other positive benefits of a good night’s sleep include (but are not limited to):

  • Anxiety reduction*
  • Less irritability
  • Cortisol, a stress hormone, decreases*
  • Energy levels increase*

When we are sleep deprived, not only does our desire to enjoy sex take a nose dive, but there may be unnecessary tensions in your relationship. The daytime tiredness could become overwhelming, as your tolerance levels dip way down, and you find yourself bickering with your sweetie more frequently.

How Does Sleep Affect Your Sex Life?

Well rested couples not only have a better sex life, but also an overall positive outlook on life in general.

Sleep is necessary to restore our body and mind, and when we have a poor quality of sleep due to stress, work, social activities, family or anything else that might steal your ability to have a blissful sleep, all aspects of your life will be affected.

When we don’t get 7 to 8 hours of sleep a night we are obviously tired and our energy levels drop. It is difficult to get through the day to do the necessary chores, and without proper sleep, it may seem impossible to enjoy a sexual encounter.

Testosterone levels, in men, decrease* when good sleep is not achieved on a regular basis. Testosterone is a hormone that supports a man’s sex drive.

How Sleep Affects Testosterone Levels?

Low testosterone levels are linked to poor concentration, mental fatigue, a decrease* in physical strength and a lower libido (sex drive).

More testosterone is made while we sleep than while awake, so it just makes sense that the better sleep that men get, the higher their testosterone levels will be.

Naturally, testosterone levels drop about 1 to 2 percent per year after men reach the age of 40.

In recent studies it has been found that men that don’t sleep well have lower testosterone (by more than 10%) levels in as little as 7 days.

Sleep After Sex: What Really Disappoints Her in Bed?

Sex involves the mind, body and soul and it should be an amazing experience.

Women have been known to complain about their partner not taking the time to enjoy foreplay and “petting”. In many cases, it may take longer to achieve organism by going straight to intercourse and glossing over the intimacy of foreplay.

It is good manners to shower and feel (and smell) fresh before engaging in sex, not only to clean intimate areas, but also hands and fingernails. After a long tiring day, many individuals just want a “quickie”, and roll over and go to sleep. It is beneficial for both of you, to take the time and offer your partner a refreshed and clean sexual mate.

How Does Lack of Sleep Kill The Sex Drive?

Hormones are severely affected by lack of sleep, testosterone being one of the important hormones that has a direct influence on sexual desires. When people do not get restorative sleep on a regular basis, their mental and physical health suffers overtime (including their intimate relationships).

Expert Advice

According to researchers from the Chicago Medical Center, it has been found that men that get less than 5 hours of sleep a night (for just 5 to 7 days) have lower testosterone levels.

The National Sleep Foundation conducted a survey, and found that more than 25% of married or co-habiting couples say that their sex life suffers because they are just too tired.

This should not come as much of a surprise, as we live in a 24/7 fast paced world, where there is a home, family and pets to take care of, not to mention anything else that may take their attention away from delighting in sexual pleasure with their partner, and instead they head to bed, to sleep.

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Author

Expert Author : Kelly Everson (Consumer Health Digest)

Kelly Everson is an independent editor, an award-winning writer and an editorial consultant in the health and fitness industries. Currently, she is a contributing editor at Consumer Health Digest.