What Wakes You Up? Men vs. Women


what wakes you up

If you wanted to market a new cold and flu remedy intended to help suffering men and women get the rest they need, it might be helpful to know what kind of sounds are most likely to wake them up. At least that’s what a company hired UK-based neuromarketing firm MindLab to find out. The results of their study, which used EEG data to detect which sounds were most disturbing, are interesting:

Top ten sounds most likely to wake men:
1. Car alarm
2. Howling wind
3. Buzzing fly
4. Snoring
5. Noise from drains
6. Crickets chirruping
7. Sirens
8. Clock ticking
9. Drilling/workmen
10.Dripping tap

Top ten sounds most likely to wake women:
1. Baby crying
2. Dripping tap
3. Rowdiness
4. Snoring
5. Buzzing fly
6. Drilling/workmen
7. Sirens
8. Car alarm
9. Howling wind
10. Noise from drains

[From Chicago Tribune – Julie’s Health Club – Top 10 sounds that wreck your sleep by Julie Deardorff.]

The most striking gender difference is “crying baby,” which is the #1 disruptor of women’s sleep. Babies don’t even make the top 10 list for men, who are more likely to be woken by crickets chirping and dripping faucets.

The strangest one on both lists is “noise from drains” – do Brits have unusually raucous drain pipes?

  1. Dr. Pete says

    That picture at the top of the post woke me up, and not in a good way 🙂

    1. Roger Dooley says

      I think something came out of his noisy drain. 🙂


  2. Ummara says

    The reason for the ‘baby sound’ difference is that women are wired to wake up the frequency of baby cries!

    PS: The look on the guy’s face in the picture shows the love he has for his job!

  3. Lizzie Maughan says

    Yes, the Brits are a bit challenged in the world of plumbing… they are still trying to master mixer taps and installing showers!

  4. The Persuader says

    You are so right ‘Lizzie’. Only this morning I lambasted my butler for not getting enough hot water up from the kitchen for my weekly bath. Oh for the miracle of hot running water, showers and mixer taps.
    Also, we still get ‘pea soup-er’ fog on a daily basis here in London, wear top hats and capes, call everybody ‘Guvnor’ and ride around in horse drawn carriages……

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