Why is it difficult to stay asleep during menopause?

Patricia Geraghty, NP
Women's Health
The fluctuating hormones and then the decrease in the hormones estrogen and progesterone contribute to sleep problems. Many if not most of the final menstrual cycles occur without ovulation and thus without the post-ovulation hormone progesterone. We do know that progesterone causes sleepiness. It is possible that the reduction in progesterone even though menstrual cycles have not ceased can contribute to sleep problems early in the menopause transition. More research needs to be done on this.
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
Over three-quarters of women in true menopause (which also can hit anywhere from ages 40 to 55) have hot flashes caused by the spiking and falling of estrogen and progesterone levels that actually wake the brain during sleep and can be accompanied by night sweats. So, while you’re still losing the hormones that help you fall asleep, you’re also waking frequently and having a hard time falling back to sleep. In fact, having problems maintaining sleep is one of the early signs of menopause.
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