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Sleep-Deprived: Why Generation X is getting less sleep than others

Posted at 10:59 AM, Feb 17, 2020

This may not come as a surprise to most women, but new research shows members of Generation X are more sleep-deprived than any other generation...ever.

It's true even when compared to men born in the same years – between 1965 and 1980. So why can't the Gen Xers get their zzzs? Women will tell you it's all about being too busy.

Like many busy, working moms, Jackie Renaldo is running on little sleep.

"It’s hard to maintain your energy throughout the day,” said Renaldo. “No matter how much coffee you drink. And if you drink too much then you're too jittery."

Jackie isn't alone, researchers say one-third of Gen X women get less than seven hours of sleep per night. Many get much less.

"Women are coming to me and they tell me they are sleep deprived, depressed and anxious," Dr. Bonnie Gasquet said.

Gasquet says she hears different stories from her sleepless patients, but there is usually one common theme.

"We are so busy, we keep doing things and keep doing things so the cortisol stays up. That tells our brain, stay on - worry more," said Gasquet.

Worn out women try all kinds of over-the-counter remedies.

"Tried going to bed at a certain time,” said Ellen Bauer. “I tried having the TV on, having the TV off. I tried having tea. I tried everything."

Over-the-counter remedies may work temporarily, but it turns out, a simple blood test to check your hormones could be the key to getting some zzzs.

"We make everything in great abundance and in a nice ration when we are in 20s,” said Gasquet. “We feel great, then with time and gravity, everything goes down, so when we age, we stop making enough to balance."

Bauer found out she was way out of balance and is on a regimen of bioidentical hormones and peptides. She says she is now sleeping through the night for the first time in years.

"It's like getting out of a dysfunctional relationship, you think it's fine and then you are like, ‘How did I live like that?’"

The busy executive even lost weight which is something experts say could happen when you start getting regular rest.

"When you don't get enough sleep at night, our body is hungry when we get up, we think we are hungry all the time," said Gasquet.

Hormone treatments are not for everyone, so doctors say there are some simple tips that could help any woman escape the exhaustion.

Number one: delegate everything you can. Number two: stop being a “yes person.” The doctor says women need to stop thinking that they are the “keepers of the world.”

Doctors warn bioidentical hormones or any kind of hormones are not an option for anyone with a history of breast cancer or other cancers.

But say anybody can turn off the phone and other stressors an hour before bedtime to try and increase your chances of a good night's sleep.

This story was originally published by Kelley Dunn at WPTV.