Menopause Month: The Sleep Window

menopause month sleep window sleeping cat

This Week’s Thrive in Five is About Creating A Sleep Window

This month is all about menopause, a subject that is very dear to my heart. I myself have just started HRT, which has been transformational for me. Just to be clear, this is not medical advice. In this series, I’ll be sharing some practical tips to alleviate your symptoms without requiring you to go on hormones – if that’s not where you need to be! So, this week we are going to be talking about creating a sleep window.

Sleep Science

Dr Matthew Walker is a professor of Neuroscience and Psychology and the founding director of the Centre for Human Sleep Science. His research investigates the effects of sleep on brain function. According to Dr Walker, we need around seven to eight hours of good-quality sleep to function properly. If you’re interested Dr Matthew Walker has an excellent book Why We Sleep. As we’ve discussed before, sleep deprivation can have a serious impact on both our physical and health. Therefore, you will see the benefits from getting enough sleep in all areas of life, but it will be particularly helpful for managing those perimenopausal/menopausal symptoms.

Creating a Sleep Window

I would suggest getting a minimum of seven hours’ sleep, which is what most of us need. In order to achieve this, you will need to create a sleep window of seven – ideally eight – hours. An eight-hour window will allow for a little prevarication getting to bed and perhaps waking in the night or earlier than usual, which is often the case during menopause. For example, if your consistent wake time is 6:30am, your bedtime should be 10:30pm. If this feels like a lot, start by increasing your sleep window by 10 minutes until you hit that eight-hour mark.

You might find my podcast episode the sleep staircase provides some useful tips on winding down for better quality sleep.

The Force Multiplier

Sleep is the force multiplier. When you’re sleeping well, you will feel more energised and better able to handle the rigours of daily life, including those perimenopausal symptoms. So, how will you create a sleep window of eight hours?

Warch on demand our Raising Awareness Of Menopause In The Working World webinar. I’ll was joined by Dr Tanya Patrick, who is a GP and functional medicine doctor. Together, we’ll cover the basics of menopause, breaking down some myths, talking about HRT, and the alternative routes to hormone therapy, as well.

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