COUPLES AND SLEEP
Recent research surveys have found that given a choice, Americans choose sleep over sex. And 26-30% of American adults say they sleep better alone than with a partner.
Tossing and turning, snoring, and the desire for different room temperatures are at the top of the list of complaints for couples. Also, restless leg syndrome, CPAP machines, partners who want to cuddle, poor mattress quality, mismatched sleep schedules and electronics in the bedroom all contribute to a poor sleeping
environment. Women, more than men, report it keeps them awake – a full 60%.
Research in this area is new and most of it focuses on whether or not couples who sleep together are happier and whether or not happy couples sleep better together than unhappy couples. There has been a stigma about sleeping in separate beds but sometimes that is the best solution. 63% of couples sleep most of the night separated, whether that means on their own side of the bed or in separate bedrooms.
Dyadic sleep or sleep concordance is when couples sleep at the same time and some sleep researchers believe that sleeping together may actually be better for our health. But if one partner suffers from a sleep disorder both people suffer. And when brain waves or eye movements are studied it shows that people sleep better by themselves than with a partner. While sleeping together can make couples feel more connected sometimes sleeping separately is the only way to get a good night’s sleep. What the research is finding is that many couples can sleep separately and live happily.