Sleep is important and getting good, quality rest is key to living a healthy, productive life. However, if you share a bed with a partner, you may not always feel like you're getting your best sleep.
Maybe your partner snores or kicks in their sleep. While there may be a few things that annoy you, about sleeping with your significant other, there are actually many benefits to sharing a bed. And yes, we mean actually sleeping (although we'll talk about non-sleep activities a little, too).
Benefits of sleeping together
Here are some little-known benefits to sharing a bed with a partner. (Psst! Some of these things even apply to sleeping with a furry friend.)
While sharing a bed can be intimate and romantic, there are some major health benefits to sleeping together, too.
- Sleeping together can lower your blood pressure (because of oxytocin, which we'll talk about a little later).
- Sleeping together can reduce inflammation. This is because of lower levels of cortisol, which is released by the adrenal gland in response to stress or danger. When you're sleeping with someone, you feel safer, so your body isn't triggered to release cortisol. (This one goes for sleeping with a furry friend, too.)
- Sleeping together can strengthen your immune system. (Some non-sleep activities have been found to make you more resistant to getting a cold or the flu.)
When you share a bed with a partner, if your schedules allow, you'll likely go to bed and wake up at the same time. Being on the same sleep schedule can help you you maximize awake-time together and also spend some quality time in bed before you actually fall to sleep.
Having the same sleep schedule means that your circadian rhythms (internal clocks) are in sync, which can also help bring harmony to your relationship.
Increased happiness & energy
When you sleep with the person you love every night, your body releases dopamine, which makes you feel pleasure (when released in large quantities), and serotonin, which is known as the "happy chemical." So, sharing a bed literally makes you happier.
If you're happy, love who you're sleeping next to and, of course, have the right mattress and pillows for good sleep, you're going to sleep well, which also means you'll wake up refreshed and ready to conquer your day.
Fall asleep faster
Sometimes, when you're alone, it's easy to get lost in your own thoughts. And we've all been there—getting lost in your thoughts often leads to overthinking (and not sleeping!). When you sleep with a partner, you're less likely to get tangled up in your inner monologue and more likely to relax and fall asleep.
You may also feel a level of security you may not feel if you were sleeping alone (this lowers your cortisol levels, like we mentioned earlier), which can help you fall asleep faster and stay asleep all night.
Find the perfect sleeping temperature
It's recommended that your sleeping environment be about 67 degrees Fahrenheit for your best sleep. (The colder temperature promotes sleep.) But 67 can sometimes feel chilly, especially when it's windy and cold outside. Sharing a bed with a partner can help combat this issue. It may be a cool 67 in the room, but cuddling up with your partner while you fall asleep can help you both fall asleep faster.
If it get a little too toasty under the covers, stick a foot or arm out into the cooler air. Exposing your pressure points to the cool temperature should cool you right off.
Is your partner putting off a little too much heat? (Nothing's worse than waking up covered in sweat.) Read our sleep tips for hot sleepers, here. >>
Get more restorative sleep
Mostly, we've been talking about actually snoozing, but we know that your bed is more than just where you catch zzz's. You fold laundry, catch up on emails, snuggle with your furry friends and spend quality time with your significant other in bed, too. And whether that QT with your partner is talking about your day, watching a movie, or something a liiiiiiiittle different, spending time in bed with someone you love and are attracted to can be great for your sleep.
Time you and your partner spend in bed not sleeping can promote restorative sleep by:
- Boosting estrogen levels in women, which helps promote deeper sleep.
- Triggering a hormone release in men that causes fatigue. Namely, your body releases oxytocin (a.k.a. the love hormone). Women can also experience an oxytocin release after certain non-sleep-related activities.
And it's not just that certain non-sleep-related activity we're all thinking of that can be benficial. Even something as simple as holding hands or cuddling can trigger your body to release oxytocin and help you get better, deeper sleep.
Experience a strengthened connection
Sleeping together can help strengthen your connection with your partner, whether you've been happily married for 20 years, have just started living together or are waiting to define the relationship. Spending time in bed with your partner (both snoozing and doing non-sleep-related activities) is important to creating and keeping up a healthy relationship.
If you and your partner don't sleep great together, don't stress! We're here to help. After all, sleep is kind of our thing.
Maybe your mattress is old and creaky, causing frequent wake-ups and tossing and turning. Or maybe the two of you have outgrown your mattress and are ready for an upgrade. Whatever the case, we've got your back.