Can Sex Help You Have Better Sleep?by | Last Updated
Sex and sleep. What do they have in common apart from sharing one scene — a bedroom?
It turns out sex does help people sleep better!
I’m sure you’ll agree that it’s a much better remedy than sleeping pills. And it actually has a reverse effect! Curious to find out how it all works? Read on.
How Sex Can Improve Sleep
Imagine you and your partner lying in bed in a dark and quiet room…
Such atmosphere of intimacy is relaxing and soothing, which is exactly what you need right before sleep. So, you’ve just had sex, and you both feel contented and somewhat exhausted by love, right?
Then tell me:
Isn’t sex a perfect activity to do before bed?
“Interestingly enough, different studies over years have been showing different numbers as to how long an average intercourse lasts for an average couple. Some of them stated the median was 5 minutes, others counted it was 7.5, and some results reached as high as 9. The best way to interpret such findings is to agree that lovemaking is a very personal thing and preferences as for duration vary from couple to couple.”
Falling asleep can sometimes be quite hard. Especially when your regular life is stressful and busy. I know what it’s like as I often find it difficult to even close my eyes after a tiresome day because of anxiety and bad thoughts. However, spending some time with my partner under the covers has always been a key to falling asleep quicker and sleeping peacefully until morning.
Isn’t it a bit controversial?
After all, sex is an activity that makes us exciting and aroused.
Science says there are a few explanations, and they all come down to the release or reduction of hormones in our bodies:
- Endorphin. This hormone has a similar effect to painkillers. It relieves pain and induces the feeling of happiness. If you can’t fall asleep because of headache or any other pain, sex is a much healthier solution than taking pills. Besides, it helps you feel somewhat tranquil.
- Oxytocin. Commonly referred to as “love hormone”, oxytocin is released in your organism when you do all sorts of bonding activities, starting with playing with your pet, cuddling, or making love. It’s actually the hormone responsible for that bonding feeling. But apart from that effect, it’s also calming and stress-relieving, thus building a natural path for you to fall asleep.
- Cortisol. While it’s often called a “stress hormone”, it’s also often mistaken as something that does harm to your body. In reality, though, this hormone helps your organism cope with stress. It increases the concentration of glucose in blood, thus making more energy available for your body to handle that stress (for example, when you work out). But who needs energy before sleep? Right, no one. The good news is sex lowers the levels of cortisol in your body, helping you peacefully drift off.
- Prolactin. Another hormone released during orgasm, prolactin is connected with the feeling of content and satisfaction. Its levels are naturally high when you sleep, so this might be the key to why we feel sleepy after an intercourse. Especially men, huh?
See, what happens in your body during an intercourse can really set you up for some good sleep. But what if you don’t feel like doing this tonight? What if you’re just too tired?
Well, that might be a typical scenario for some couples.
And there’s a scientific explanation, too, for why this scenario exists.
Is Sleep the One to Blame for No Desire for Sex?
“More than 30% of American adults don’t get enough sleep, which means they sleep less than 7 hours. Other than issues with sex life, this might lead to a number of serious health conditions like heart disease, obesity, diabetes, stroke, and some mental diseases.”
Sex and sleep are connected very closely. Sleep deprivation of one or both partners is one of the most common reasons for less sex in couples. And it’s quite natural when the situation looks like this:
What? What sex? I’m barely standing, dear.
A recent study has showed how sleep affects sex drive in women. 171 female participants were asked to report how much time they slept and complete a survey about their sex drive every day in a course of 14 days. The results revealed that the longer women slept, the better arousal they had next day. To be exact, just one more hour of sleep increased the desire to have sex by 14%. This also involved a healthier genital response to sexual stimulation.
As for men, sleep affects their libido quite a lot too. And it’s again about hormones. Testosterone, to be exact. Researchers have found that men who sleep less than 7 hours have lower levels of testosterone, which in turn lowers their sex drive and is linked to erectile dysfunction in the long run.
In addition to that, some studies suggest sleep deprivation in men affects their fertility. This means the semen of sleep-deprived men is of lower quality than that of men who sleep well.
Also Read: 8 Best Mattresses for Sex
With all of that being said, it looks like you could sleep better if you had more sex, but you might not want sex because you don’t sleep well and have no energy. It’s a vicious circle, isn’t it?
But here’s the good news:
You can break it. And there’s actually a very easy and enjoyable way to do that.
Instead of just trying to keep your eyes shut, turn to your partner, give them a gentle kiss, and let it go a natural way. You need to use your own initiative and you will get the results for both of you. More sex will help you get better slumber, deeper and less interrupted. And, as a result, you both will have a healthier sex drive. What for, you might ask? For having even more sex, of course! Just don’t let anyone break this healthy cycle again.
So, what do you think on the connection between sleep and sex? Have you ever noticed how sex affects your sleep and vice versa? Feel free to share in the comments!
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