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A Woman's Guide to Sleep: Guaranteed Solutions for a Good Night's Rest Hardcover – October 3, 2000

4.5 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Feeling drowsy? "Women are probably the most sleep-deprived creatures on earth," writes Joyce Walsleben, director of the Sleep Disorders Center at New York University School of Medicine and the 1998 spokesperson for the National Sleep Foundation's Survey on Women and Sleep. Hormonal surges--pregnancy, PMS, perimenopause--disrupt our sleep, as do the combined demands of career and children. (A new mother may lose up to 700 hours of sleep before her baby's first birthday!) Add stress, bladder urgency, depression, pain, and a variety of other interferences, and it's a wonder we sleep at all.

Walsleben covers why and how we sleep, what's keeping us awake, aging and how it affects stages of sleep, and physical and emotional conditions that can interfere with getting enough sleep. She helps us understand what is disrupting our own sleep, with advice from simple lifestyle changes to herbs, supplements, drugs, and foods. And she provides tons of tips, such as these:

  • If you have a glow-in-the-dark clock, turn it around so you won't see it when you wake up at night. We all wake up several times during the night, and watching the clock will reinforce the "awake feeling" and make it more difficult to get back to sleep.
  • Avoid caffeine--including coffee, tea, soft drinks, and chocolate--and stimulating medications from afternoon on. It takes 3 to 7 hours to rid your system of caffeine completely.
  • If you have a new baby, nap when your baby sleeps. Aim for a 30-minute nap in the early afternoon. A longer nap will make you sleep more deeply and awake feeling groggy and grumpy.
  • If nighttime sex leaves you wide awake (while your partner sleeps like a baby beside you), try scheduling romance early in the evening, or delay it until early in the morning.
Whatever the reasons for your sleep deprivation, you'll find explanations and solutions in this book. You'll even learn a dozen ways to stop your partner from snoring! --Joan Price

From Publishers Weekly

Combining knowledge and writing skill, Walsleben, the director of the Sleep Disorders Center at NYU's School of Medicine, and Baron-Faust (What Every Woman Should Know About Breast Cancer) have prepared the first book focusing on sleeping problems that are unique to women. With a dose of good cheer and a knack for presenting complex information practically, the authors make a strong case for why women should not treat sleep lightlyAparticularly since 56% of all women suffer from sleep-deprivation due to hormonal imbalance and other female-only conditions. The good news is that, from infancy, women are able to experience more slow-wave (deep) sleep than men, and they maintain this ability throughout most of their lives. From the value of 20- to 40-minute naps (any longer would leave the napper groggy) to recipes for pre-bedtime snacks (foods such as milk, cheese, bananas and turkey are effective sleep-inducers if enjoyed an hour before bedtime) and useful suggestions, such as "ban glow-in-the-dark bedroom clocks," they provide many ideas that a woman can implement on her own as well as cautioning when to seek expert intervention. The authors also include a chapter on why women (unlike men) do not seem able to fall asleep quickly after sex (there may be psychological as well as biological reasons), and one on sleep disorders in children and teenagers. The appendix of resources help round out an altogether welcome book to the field of women's health. Agent, Vicky Bijur. 8-city author tour. (Sept.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Harmony; 1st Pbk edition (October 3, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0812932595
  • ISBN-13: 978-0812932591
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6.5 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,762,456 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I enjoyed this book because the authors spoke frankly and openly about the various aspects of women's sleep. I'm not sure the book lives up to it's title phrase of "guaranteed solutions for a good night's rest" but it is very helpful and does offer some solutions I had never tried. It was also interesting to note how many factors can affect a woman's sleep as opposed to a man's. The authors offer sleep solutions in all categories, including certain foods you can eat to help you sleep, supplements you can take and lifestyle changes that aren't too tough to do. There are helpful little lists along the way, like "The top ten sleep busters" and "Stop the Snoring". The authors delve into the structure of sleep, explaining in layman's terms the various sleep stages and cycles, and how they can be affected by stimuli. One aspect of the book I did not like were the gray boxed areas that interrupted the reading. These areas, sometimes a few pages long, were very good reading, but they interrupted the flow of the book and often got you going on another sleep topic so that when you picked up where you left off, you forgot what you had been reading when you stopped. I also thought there was an awful lot of repetition, as though the authors were attempting to fill pages. At the very end of the book is a comprehensive listing of all sorts of sleep centers, sleep specialists, websites, and books for the sleep impaired. I thought this addition was great. If you are looking for some great suggestions and some new things to try, or just interested in this topic, this is a good book for you.
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Format: Hardcover
A good blend between easy conversational writing and a large amount of fairly technical information. There's a lot in this book that could help almost anyone get a better nights sleep. She covers almost everything in here that could disrupt sleep, from hormone fluctuations, to snoring partners, to small children. While I will continue to suffer from periodic sleep deprivation for a while (comes with the job when you're a mother of small kids), with this book, I know I can keep the temporary sleep disruptions from becoming a habit and a way of life. My only gripe at all is that sometimes you have to wade through a lot of information intended for other people to find what's relevant to you, but most of the information is interelated, so that's not too tedious a job. Good job overall.
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By A Customer on November 1, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I found this book to be very helpful. I am a bit of a health nut and buy a lot of health related books. I thought it was one of the better health books that I've read. I liked that it gave both technical and common sense information about sleep. I didn't have a big sleep problem, but I have been trying some of Dr. Walsleben's suggestions and I find I am sleeping better. A lot of the old remedies really do work!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Although targeted specifically towards women, the book has much in it for everyone in their quest for a good night's sleep.

Written in an accessible style it is based on sound science and (apparently) countless hours of research. The book was a gift for someone who has benefitted greatly from the advice inside. Highly recommended!
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