Do you know we spend, on average, about 26 years of our lives sleeping? While it may sound like a lot, sleep is a restorative process for both the body and the mind. Sleeping alone has its perks (with no one hogging the blanket and hoarding the remote control), but there are a lot of benefits of sleeping next to someone.
What Are the Benefits of Sleeping Next to Someone?
The list is endless, but here are some common pros.
— Increased Sleep Quality
At any time during the day, being physically near someone might help you feel better. This is because physical contact with another person releases dopamine and serotonin, both of which have been proven to improve mood and treat depression.
Cuddling with your partner throughout the day promotes emotional well-being, and this beneficial hormonal alteration benefits both partners. In short, this frequently means that your happiness levels increase while your stress levels decrease.
Individuals in long-term, stable partnerships slept faster and woke up less frequently than those who were single or had shifting relationship statuses.
— Faster Sleep Times
A study conducted by Northumbria University in the United Kingdom discovered a link between the time required to fall asleep and our overall sleep health.
Ten to twenty minutes appears to be the recommended length of time to fall asleep for optimal sleep health. If it takes longer than thirty minutes, your sleep efficiency will suffer significantly.
However, the average amount of time required to fall asleep is about seven minutes.
When you’re alone, it’s quite natural to become absorbed in your own thoughts as your mind begins to wonder. Our brains become increasingly busy; we begin to overthink and struggle to get the rest we require.
This is why I think sleeping next to someone you care about is so helpful. They’ll instill emotions of security in you, allowing you to unwind and drift off.
— Reduced Blood Pressure
A significant advantage of sleeping with someone you care about is that it can help you live longer. It decreases the likelihood of developing life-threatening cardiovascular illnesses.
59 women participated in a sleep and intimacy study conducted by researchers at the University of North California.
They invited all participants to keep a journal of their hugs and cuddles while also monitoring their oxytocin and blood pressure levels. The researchers discovered that those with higher oxytocin levels also had the lowest blood pressure.
— Higher Quality Restorative Sleep
Having a partner in bed increases your chances of getting restful sleep, which is critical for brain health. According to the National Sleep Foundation, sex makes it easier to fall asleep because it boosts oxytocin levels.
For women, healthy sex life can boost estrogen levels, leading to better REM sleep.
— Improved Relationship Quality
Whether we’re discussing marriage, living together, or everything in between, interpersonal relationships are founded on strong emotional ties and open communication.
However, when we lack sleep, we frequently lose control of our emotions and have difficulties speaking. That is a potentially dangerous zone for relationships.
Getting a good night’s sleep is critical for successfully navigating arguments and avoiding conflict. Reduced petty bickering results in happier partnerships.
You may be interested in: Is It Healthy for Married Couples to Sleep in Separate Beds?
Pros and Cons to Sleeping Alone
Both sleeping alone and sharing a bed have their perks. Sleeping alone may help some people get a higher quality of sleep. However, for some, the benefits of sharing a bed may result in improved sleep.
Consider the advantages of each sleeping type and discover how to adapt so that you can get the greatest sleep possible regardless of your lifestyle.
• Pro: You Get More Peace and Quiet
When you sleep alone, you do not need to lie awake listening to your companion snore or to hear a conversation in the night when your bedmate is dreaming.
Silence is also a factor to consider if your partner suffers from a sleep ailment such as bruxism or sleep apnea. These situations may produce irritating noises that keep some people awake while co-sleeping, highlighting the benefits of solo sleeping.
• Pro: You Will Always Sleep Under the Blanket
There’s no need to fear waking up cold and exposed in the middle of the night when sleeping alone. When this occurs, you may discover that the only way to reclaim your part of the blankets that have become snuggly wrapped around your bedmate is to wake them up, making both of you upset.
Comfortable sleeping temperatures significantly impact the quality and quantity of sleep you get. Thus, sleeping alone enables you to adjust your bedtime temps to your preferences.
• Pro: You’re Less Likely to Be Woken Up
Sleeping by yourself helps you avoid additional nighttime annoyances that impair sleep quality. These can be triggered by a sleep companion who suffers from restless limb syndrome or bladder troubles, necessitating a midnight toilet run.
When one of the sleep partners suffers from sleep myoclonus, the other person may remain awake. These seemingly innocuous sleep disturbances might hurt your health over time.
• Con: There’s No One to Keep You Warm
Individuals who share a bed benefit from additional warmth on a cool night due to the proximity. Sharing a bed enables both sleep partners to maintain a sense of warmth and coziness throughout the night.
• Con: You’re Missing Out on Pillow Talks
Perhaps the most significant benefit of sharing a bed with a spouse who sleeps similarly to you is a better sense of connection. Sharing the warmth of a bed creates more possibilities for communication between partners and may help couples in intimate relationships feel more connected.
Many couples find that lying together in bed allows them to discuss the highs and lows of the previous day and future goals. Couples with small children or those who work long hours may consider this pre-sleep moment to be their only time alone. Many couples find that simply conversing and sharing helps them drop off to sleep.
What If Your Partner Snores?
Numerous circumstances can disrupt our sleep. To be specific, a spouse who is excessively loud or restless can be a formula for a miserable night.
Although previous research has identified excessive movement during sleep between couples as a sign of poor sleep, excessive movement does not always indicate a poor night’s sleep.
Living with snoring doesn’t just mean a bad night’s sleep. It can also mean a bad relationship. Snoring tends to cause problems for you and your partner. It can make you feel guilty and resentful, and it can hurt your intimacy.
• Use Ear Plugs
One of the quickest ways to eliminate that annoying snoring is to wear earplugs while sleeping. Soft foam earplugs are easily available in online stores and drugstores. You can also opt for silicone noise-reducing earplugs.
• Use a White Noise Machine
With a white noise machine, you can hear a steady, consistent noise that is very relaxing to the ears. Is it going to work? If it does, you’ll fall asleep.
Some white noise machines let you choose what kind of sound you want to make. Listen to the sound of ocean waves hitting the sand or even the sound of a fan running in the background.
• Use a Head-Positioning Pillow
A head-positioning pillow, often known as an anti-snore pillow, assists the user in properly aligning their neck, making them less prone to snore. You may order one online or pick one up at a local store, depending on your level of desperation for a decent night’s sleep.
What If Your Partner Tosses and Turns?
It can be a wedge between even the happiest of couples. But here is some helpful info and tips ot deal with it.
— Why Do People Toss and Turn?
There are plenty of reasons why people toss and turn in their sleep: anxiety, stress, overstimulation, poor sleep schedule, or sleeping too much during the day.
However, tossing and turning could also indicate an underlying medical condition.
• Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea happens when breathing becomes disrupted during sleep. This can result in frequent tossing and turning and awakenings throughout the night.
RLS (short for “restless leg syndrome“) is a condition that results in an uncontrollable desire to move your legs. The sensation most frequently occurs with RLS while your body is at rest, such as lying in bed. The continual demand for mobility can result in nighttime tossing and turning.
Insomnia is a sleep disorder defined by an inability to fall or stay asleep. Insomnia can be caused by a variety of factors, including various underlying mental or physical problems health problems. If you suffer from insomnia, you may notice that you move around a lot in bed, finding it difficult to fall asleep.
— Can You Stop It?
Do you toss and turn a lot? A proper sleep hygiene practice can help:
- The first step toward proper sleep hygiene is to construct a bedroom where you feel secure.
- Investing in a high-quality bed and bedding can assist in providing your body with a comfortable sleeping environment each night.
- Relaxation techniques have been demonstrated to alleviate both physical and psychological symptoms associated with worry and stress.
- Exercise on a regular basis has been demonstrated to increase sleep quality and assist your body in relaxing when it’s finally time to sleep.
- Put away devices a minimum of an hour before bed to allow your body and mind to rest.
- Maintaining a sleep routine can assist in ensuring that your body is calm and prepared to sleep at the same time each night.
What Is Motion Isolation?
Motion isolation is the degree of movement in one area of the mattress that is felt in other areas. When you sleep in a bed with high levels of motion isolation, you are unlikely to notice if your sleeping partner gets in and out of bed or changes position.
Although the majority of people report sleeping better with a spouse than they do alone, objective measurements of sleep quality are typically lower for co-sleepers, in part because their companion moves and shifts during the night.
With this in mind, even those who do not believe their partner disturbs them may benefit from a motion-isolating mattress.
For persons who sleep alone, motion isolation is substantially less crucial. Motion isolation has trade-offs that may inhibit those who sleep with a companion.
Mattresses that place a premium on motion isolation may be less bouncy, which may be uncomfortable for combination sleepers or those with mobility issues. The ability of a mattress to absorb movement might also make it unsuitable for sex.
What Are Some Good Motion Isolation Mattresses?
Generally, the best beds for motion isolation are made entirely of foam and with a polyfoam core. Some latex mattresses are also good for motion isolation. You definitely don’t want an innerspring bed if you’re sleeping with someone.
Buying a bed for couples is more difficult than purchasing one for oneself, but it is entirely possible given today’s large variety of mattresses. Since motion isolation is very important when you’re sleeping next to someone, let’s take a look at some affordable beds with low motion transfer.
• Nectar Mattress
This memory foam mattress features pressure-relieving comfort layers and a strong base. Even if it’s one of the best all-foam mattresses around, it’s priced significantly lower compared to the competition. This makes the Nectar Mattress one of the best-selling products in its category.
The comfort layers absorb and isolate motion transmission, making the bed suitable for couples who have sleep interruptions due to movement. Additionally, the bed is nearly silent when bearing weight.
Read our Nectar Mattress Review here.
The Zenhaven provides above-average motion isolation, which can help couples sleep better at night. It is designed as a flippable bed with two different firmness options: one on each side. It has a 10-inch profile and a latex construction, making it very easy to get in and out of bed.
Read our Zenhaven Mattress Review here.
• Loom & Leaf
Loom & Leaf is another Saatva mattress that performs really well in terms of motion isolation. This is to be expected, considering how it’s built. You can choose from two different firmness levels with the Loom & Leaf.
It’s an all-foam mattress that measures 12 inches in height, provides proper spinal alignment, and has extra foam in the cover for additional comfort.
Read our Loom and Leaf Mattress Review here.
Is Sleep Divorce an Option?
Sleep divorce occurs when two partners decide to sleep in separate rooms for a variety of different reasons. It’s usually because the sleeping habits of one partner decrease the sleep quality of the other. One of them might snore, grind their teeth while they’re sleeping, use a CPAP mask, or even watch too much TV before bed.
According to experts, snoring is one of the biggest reasons for sleep divorce. One couple strains to sleep amidst their noisy companion’s cranks and crackles, while the other sleeps comfortably in unconsciousness.
However, bedroom preferences can often cause conflict. One spouse likes the room to be extremely chilly, while the other prefers it to be slightly warmer.
One finds it impossible to sleep with even a speck of light, while the other prefers the TV on in the background the entire night. One is a morning person, while the other loves to sleep until the very last moment.
Can It Destroy the Relationship?
There are situations when sleep separation may be important, such as when a newborn is delivered or when a snoring partner causes considerable noise. It can also create distance between couples and serve as a means of avoiding or severing ties with a partner.
If you’re unable to sleep in the same bed as your partner due to their snoring, consider that it could be a sign of a more serious underlying health problem, such as obstructive sleep apnea.
The same is true for persons who frequently kick or move in their sleep. This may be a symptom of restless leg syndrome, which is treatable with medication.
Perhaps you prefer a firmer mattress while your partner prefers a softer one. Today’s mattress providers would gladly customize a bed for the two of you that meets both of your needs.
You must consider why you want this sleep divorce. Is it something affecting your sleep quality? Do you need more alone time? While some problems underline significant (and treatable) medical conditions, others might require seeing a couple’s therapist.
You may want to check out: Sleeping With You
Your relationship with your partner can be stronger if you sleep together. This is true even if you have been married for 20 years, are just starting to live together, or are still figuring out how to make the relationship work.
While there are some benefits to sleeping alone, research has shown that sharing a bed with a significant other usually makes people happier. Want more helpful tips like this? Check out our guide to the best mattress for couples with different sleeping preferences.
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