Sharing a Bed with Your Partner May Improve Your Health

Woman stretching in bedCouples who share a bed may fight over more than just the pillows. Women and men tend to have different preferences when it comes to sleep. Some people like a cool room with lots of blankets, others prefer a warm room. Deciding whether the television should be on or off and when to call it a night are other issues that are hard to agree upon. Varying sleep schedules, snoring, and tossing and turning also affect the quality of each partner’s sleep. But according to a recent article, the benefits of sleeping together actually outweigh the negative aspects. People in committed relationships have better overall physical and psychological health than single people, and sleeping in the same bed may be one reason why.

Several experts agree that even though partners may fight over the sheets, the security that people feel from sleeping in the same bed with the person they love has great perks. Assistant professor of psychology and psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh, Wendy M. Troxel, conducted studies that revealed that women who shared a bed with their partners slept more soundly than women who slept alone. She says, “Sleep is a critically important health behavior that we know is associated with heart disease and psychiatric well-being.” Feelings of safety could influence cortisol levels and decrease anxiety, allowing individuals to sleep more restfully.

Experts say that even couples with different bedtime preferences and work schedules can still reap the rewards of sharing a bed. They advise that couples acknowledge each other’s differences and recommend that couples share some time in bed until one partner falls asleep, and then the night owl can leave the room and come back to bed at their desired bedtime. Having a mattress that allows partners to move without disturbing each other is another way to sleep well together. Another problem that couples face is unresolved conflict. All the experts agree that regardless of sleep styles, couples should work through any disagreements or conflicts they have in order to ensure a good night’s sleep.

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  • tori v

    June 12th, 2012 at 3:34 PM

    ach! But my husband snores so much that I get very little rest when we try to sleep in the same room. I know we are young, but we already have separate bedrooms and I am happy with that.

  • molly

    June 12th, 2012 at 5:20 PM

    all the issues seem like a minor thing when compared to spending time in bed with your partner.there is just so much more to a relationship than not being able to look past tiny things like snoring and schedules.

  • Tricia

    June 12th, 2012 at 6:01 PM

    I had a pretty hard time getting used to sharing my bed, but now that I have I actually have a horrible time trying to sleep when he is not there with me! It feels so comforting to know that he is right there if anything happens, and I know that I rest so much better when he is with me.

  • Riley

    June 13th, 2012 at 4:21 AM

    I don’t know that bed sharing makes you healthier but I do think that overall it probably helps to keep the marriage strong. I know that it seems like it would be a small thing, but I think about how many times I have laid in bed with my own spouse and had the most wonderful conversations, worked out some really tough problems, and in general have just had a lot of good times together. Those are things that often can’t be replicated outside of the bedroom. I just think that overall for me that this is something very important in my marriage that I would not want to lose.

  • marguerite dais

    June 14th, 2012 at 6:31 AM

    For me and my husband this did not work. We both thought that we would sleep better in separate beds, but it didn’t work out for either of us. He thought that he would sleep more soundly if I was not telling him to roll over all night long to stop snoring, and I of course thought that I would sleep better without having to listen to him snore all night. But we were both wrong. I actually missed the rhythmic noise of the snoring and I think he just missed me being in the room with him. So now I have my office back since it doesn’t have to be a second bedroom anymore!

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