Low testosterone in men and insomnia have been seen to both result in daytime fatigue. However, can sleep deprivation and other sleep related issues be a cause of low T? Below we explore how these two are linked, and the steps you can take to lessen the risk of both.
Based on some research, the link is there, but can go both ways. Low testosterone can cause sleep disturbances, and sleep disturbances can cause low testosterone. This in turn creates a vicious cycle that never stops, unless you treat one or the other.
What Research Shows About Sleep Deprivation and Low T
Studies have been reported that gradual decrease in sleep time is partially responsible for low T in older men. Another disturbance called sleep apnea – a chronic breathing disturbance that occurs during sleep – is also linked to low T.
In a JAMA study, men volunteered to have their testosterone levels checked with restrictions on duration of sleep over a course of eight nights. The study found that daytime testosterone levels dropped 10-15 percent from only five hours of sleep per night. There was also a progressive loss of energy over the week.
Why Is There a Link Between Loss of Sleep and Low Testosterone?
Normal testosterone production requires full body rest and undisturbed sleep – our body does the repairs in REM sleep. Over time, sleep disturbances can cause increase in the stress hormone called cortisone, which can cause low testosterone.
Our body replenishes the majority of testosterones that are used during the day. Gradual reduction in sleep is closely correlated with low testosterone, so make sure to get plenty of sleep! This is especially crucial in older men.
Tips for Better Sleep
On average, adults should get seven to nine hours of sleep every night. There may be nights where you work late, or other situations prevent you from a healthy amount of sleep – that is okay! It is the back to back nights that average five to six hours that can take a toll on our testosterone levels.
- Set a routine. Go to bed and wake up at the same time, every day, including weekends.
- Keep your bedroom quiet, dark, and at a comfortable temperature.
- Avoid bedroom distractions, like eating, watching TV, and browsing your computer.
If you have symptoms like low energy or low libido, contact Dr. Ben Evans for the possibility of low testosterone. Don’t wait a minute longer and risk decreased T levels in later years!