The Benefits of Sharing a Bed
While it can take some adjustment to get used to sleeping next to a partner, new research shows it’s probably worth it. This study looked at a comprehensive suite of data from over 1000 working-age adults. The data included a survey asking about how often a person slept in the same bed as:
- A partner or spouse
- A child or children
- Other family members
The results showed that people sleeping with their romantic partner experienced significantly better sleep in many ways than essentially any other group.
Compared to people who never shared a bed, people who spend most nights in bed with a partner get more sleep. That’s partly because they fell asleep faster and were less likely to wake up after falling asleep. They also had lower sleep apnea risk, and, as a result of all this better sleep, they had less fatigue.
Other bed partners didn’t show the same benefits. For example, sleeping with a child led to more insomnia, and sleeping with other family members had a higher sleep apnea risk.
The benefits of sharing a bed with a partner extended into the day. Those who slept with a partner had lower depression, anxiety, and stress scores. They felt they had greater social support and were perhaps unsurprisingly more satisfied with their life and relationships.
These benefits seem like they’re worth maintaining if at all possible. Of course, if your partner is snoring, you likely experience a loss of sleep, which is the opposite of how most people benefit from sleeping with a partner. This is a common story we hear from our patients in Lee’s Summit, but there is a better solution than sleeping apart.