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If you find yourself tossing and turning in bed despite spending most of your day longing for the moment you can finally sink in to it, you're most certainly not alone.

According to a report released by the Centre for Disease Control's National Centre for Health Statistics in the United States, women, especially single mothers, have a much harder time nodding off than their male counterparts.

The findings established that almost one-quarter of single mothers have difficulty getting a good night's sleep while approximately half admit to feeling far from rested the following morning.

Researchers suggest a number of reasons for the contrast in male and female sleep habits, with experts in the field citing hormones, menstrual cycle, pregnancy, stress and menopause as just some of the reason many of us fail to get the recommended eight hours.

Commenting on these factors, Dr. Dianne Augelli., a sleep expert at NewYork - Presbyterian, explains the disparity between men and women, saying: "Estrogen works on several different neurotransmitter pathways that may have an impact on the regulation of sleep, and progesterone can have a hypnotic property."

While it may come as no surprise to learn that periods and pregnancy can affect a woman's sleeping pattern due to the number of associated symptoms and discomfort which accompany these processes, it's disheartening to learn that the next stage in a woman's life can also wreak havoc on her bedtime routine.

Reflecting on this, Dr. Augelli  explains how obstructive sleep apnea disrupts a woman's sleep during menopause and reminds couples to be aware of the issue, saying: "Just like how women present with different heart-attack symptoms than men, women present with different symptoms of OSA than men. And insomnia can be one of those symptoms."

Sigh.

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