4 Ways Alcohol Messes with Your Sleep
We know that a nightcap—or three—won't help us drift off into a peaceful slumber. But we didn't know exactly why it sets us up for a restless, sweaty, snore-y, anxious night.
It's Especially Disruptive to Women
After an evening of drinking, women, in particular, are likely to be tossing and turning
, a 2011 study found. Although everyone in the study drank until they were equally drunk (the researchers doled out drinks adjusted for gender and weight and measured intoxication by breath alcohol content), the female participants woke up more often during the night, stayed awake longer and slept for less time overall than the men. This might be because women metabolize alcohol more quickly
—meaning they speed through alcohol's sedative effects and get to that second, fragmented part of the night sooner.