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Pillow Talk: How Well Do You Sleep With Your Partner?

Falling asleep next to your partner or feeling them next to you in the middle of the night can be a comforting and reassuring experience. There's something deeply intimate about listening to their breathing, cuddling for warmth, or sweetly and lightly touching in the dark. However, while sleeping with your partner might be great for your sex life, it may not be good for your sleep patterns.

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Believe it or not, a British study found that couples actually sleep better when they are alone. After conducting a study using 56 volunteers for two nights, they found that each partner had a more restful night's sleep on the night when they slept alone. In a previous study, they also discovered that one's partner triggers one-third of the 20 to 60 discrete movements made during the course of a typical night's sleep.

If you sleep beside someone who snores, this information is hardly surprising, I'm sure. Now consider that 70% of Americans don't get enough sleep. That's a lot of tired people driving down the road, flying airplanes, or managing your money! Some experts believe that sleep is more important to your body than diet and exercise. For more information on how sleep -- or the lack of it -- effects you, click here.

Could it be you might actually need another bedroom?

According to a 2005 National Sleep Foundation survey, 23 percent of partnered adults frequently sleep solo because of their loved one's snoring, kicking or other sleep problem. That number doesn't include those who bed down apart because of mismatched schedules or desire for different room temperatures, or to let an exhausted spouse avoid a tyke's wake-up calls. And though a small number of couples who opt for separate beds do so to recapture a sense of romance, for most, there's one simple fantasy: some decent rest.

Still, despite the sleep deprivation or exhaustion, most of us wouldn't give up sleeping with the one we love. According to Francesca Pankhurst, a researcher at the University of Brighton, and Jim Horne, a researcher at Loughborough University, the emotional benefits of sleeping beside a loved one far outweigh any side effects we might experience by not getting a good night's sleep.

Psychologically, people probably think they're more at rest, relaxed, and peaceful. Maybe they think that being disturbed by their partner is reassuring because they know some one's there.

And because we're here to help, click here for some helpful tips about getting a better night's sleep. Sweet dreams!


Join The Conversation
CupcakeGal CupcakeGal 10 years
I don't like when there is too much contact i.e. holding me in his arms the whole sleeping time but I enjoy his breath on my neck,his smell, even hearing his respiration is the best thing! I guess it gives closure and comfort to know that there is somebody next to me but I hate cuddling especially when I am deeply asleep!!
lms lms 10 years
My hubby likes it really hot and I like it cold. He will turn off the air and I will wake up sweating. He also snores...and I too have to give him an accidental kick. My 7 yr old daughter still likes to sneak into our bed and I always end up with her foot or hands in my face. I am convinced she knocked me in the head one night b/c I had a serious pain for about a week. My best sleep is when I go to the other room.
ninjarobot ninjarobot 10 years
sleeping together is always great in theory, so we'll lay together all snuggly and cute for awhile, but i get really claustrophobic and i dont really want to sleep essentially in his armpit. plus my neck usually hurts in the morning if i do that. so i'll sometimes sneak off to the couch or another bed in the house. oh... and he snores, so.....there ya go. no, i cant sleep in bed with him unless im already alseep when he gets in bed.
xxbrittney xxbrittney 10 years
i love sleeping with my guy but i deff understand where this survey is coming from. like i fall asleep much faster when he's there and it's a much deeper sleep but i sleep much less the nights i sleep with him because we both wake up tons of times in the middle of the night to kiss each other or like change cuddling positions but when it comes down to it, i'd still choose sleepin with him an gettin less sleep than sleepin alone
emisaurusrex emisaurusrex 10 years
I fall asleep easily with my boyfriend, but it's hard to stay asleep. We currently share a full size bed and I find myself waking up in the middle of the night nearly falling off the bed (he tends to take up more than his fair share) or hot (we live in Texas.) Once we buy a queen size bed in a few weeks it shouldn't be nearly as much of a problem.
Hope5 Hope5 10 years
I can't sleep without my husband.
higgydt4 higgydt4 10 years
I must be the odd one. I can't fall asleep if someone is touching me. I need my boyfriend as far away on the other side of the bed as possible. haha. I dont know what it is, but I just can't fall asleep unless I'm alone.
lickety-split lickety-split 10 years
i sleep best alone. meaning alone in the house. if anyone is home i wake up at the slightest noise (99% of the time). i think it's a mom thing, baby waking up and all. i like to sleep in a VERY warm room with no blankets. dh likes it so cold you can see your breath and tons of blankets. he sleeps through anything EXCEPT; the sound of the heater. i had to threaten to buy a portable space heater and sleep in the other room before he agreed to leave the heat on at night (61). i sleep very lightly unless i am home alone, then i sleep like a dead preson, no matter waht time of day it is :)
honey31 honey31 10 years
I love falling asleep in his arms!
smith3 smith3 10 years
popgoestheworld - I'm just the same! I love to cuddle up at the end of the day, but when it's time to sleep I need my space - the most I can cope with is one leg touching.
LuckyGrl-83 LuckyGrl-83 10 years
i love sleeping with my guy riight next to me.. my favorite is falling asleep cuddling but after a while we just drift apart bc of stiff nexks or numbed arms LOL.. we do reconnect later in the night, maybe its the feet, or a hand on each other... my favorite is the light squeeze or kisshe'll give me sometimes when he wakes up to go to the bathroom or to get some water... i notice all his movements bc im the lightest sleeper EVER!! I'm so lucky he doesnt snore :) that, and we love to snuggle in the coldest room possible, under as many covers as we can :)
popgoestheworld popgoestheworld 10 years
I can't fall asleep being snuggled. Too much twitching, too much heat! I love the temp to be COLD when I sleep. The best I can do is sometimes falling a sleep with our feet touching or something. I'm a light sleeper and my man can sleep through anything. That is GREAT for me because I am always waking him up in the middle of the night on accident and he just falls right back to sleep.
t0xxic t0xxic 10 years
I cant fall asleep with out him. But whats this talk about sleep? Both my 2 year old and Newborn will not sleep unless there in my bed. And 2 year old feet dont feel good in your face ;)
vrico2005 vrico2005 10 years
Since my fiance and I are both busy busy people who get up at different times we usually sleep apart during the week and together on the weekends. This makes waking up together Saturday morning so much more special! :LOVE:
honey31 honey31 10 years
I am a light sleeper and sometimes my boyfriend and it drives me nuts!Overall I like having him beside because I feel so safe with him with me.
grl-in-the-world grl-in-the-world 10 years
My boyfriend only sleeps 5 hours a nite, so he typically wakes me up when he goes to bed at about 2 in the morning, and then again at 7am when the alarm goes off for him to get up for work.
Marci Marci 10 years
:D That's funny, LizaToad. The smartest thing I ever did was sleep with my boyfriend. He's like my own personal Ambien. I can be tossing and turning and he'll come to bed and snuggle up and I'm sleeping like a baby within minutes.
PinkSparkleGrl PinkSparkleGrl 10 years
I agree with this study, even tho I do like sleeping with my boyfriend. He is the furnace and I am the cold one. I like TONS of blankets and he likes 1, so sometimes it really does not work out. He snores sometimes and I kick. Oh boy right? I do get a better rest if I am alone and so does he. We have joked about getting separate beds before - I will have to show him this study. I think more people do not sleep in different beds do to the societal perception of "your relationship must be in trouble if you do not sleep in the same bed".
kristyrk kristyrk 10 years
I am like the others and find that I cannot sleep without my bf there! I dont know why it is but I wake up 20 times a night when he is not sleeping next to me. Although it does irritate me somtimes when he comes to bed after me and wakes me up, but thats just cause I'm cranky!
nicachica nicachica 10 years
i always used to have trouble sleeping with different guys until my current boyfriend. now i sleep like a log with him and its so comfortable. but yes, his snoring can get to me sometimes but normally that's after a night of drinking! (not sure why that is...)
LizaToad LizaToad 10 years
HAHA TRA - it's the opposite with my bf and i! i heat up like a furnace and he always trys to stay right next to me to keep warm!
missnomi missnomi 10 years
I know exactly what you mean tra!
tra tra 10 years
I can't sleep if I'm warm or hot. My husband likes to touch me with his leg or foot or something in the middle of the night. It makes me so hot...he's like a furnace...that I wake up and pull the covers off and try to change positions to get away from the heat. I love him and love to cuddle but sweating and not sleeping because of temperature just can't happen too often.
vmruby vmruby 10 years
He snores but i'm so used to it and some nights it's alot quieter than others . I sleep like the dead anyway when i'm really tired. Other than that, like the others i don't sleep as good when he is away.I am much more relaxed when he's home.
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