Is your loved one keeping you awake at night and ruining your sleep? Recurring sleep disturbance is one of the biggest complaints among partners who share a bed. There’s no doubt that thousands of couples suffer from “sleep incompatibility,” one of the biggest struggles partners face at bedtime.
Two separate studies found that women are more frequently disrupted by their partners’ nighttime restlessness than men were, and the most common disruption was snoring. Not only are guys more likely to snore than their female counterparts, they also tend to be sprawlers in bed. When you are young and madly in love, a fussy bedmate isn’t such a big deal. But our tolerance for poor quality sleep changes over the years.
“With older couples, sex is often in the past, snoring is a problem, plus they’re going to the bathroom multiple times a night,” explains Dr. Paul Rosenblatt, who teaches family social studies at the University of Minnesota. “Lots of older couples end up not wanting to share a bed.”
Prolonged periods of sleep disturbance are linked to a slew of health problems, including an increased risk for stroke, depression, heart disease and weight gain (caused by elevated cortisol levels). One British study even suggests that poor sleep has a direct correlation with divorce rates.
If your partner is tossing and turning, snoring like a chainsaw and generally a bad bed companion, there are a few steps you can take to catch some much-needed ZZZZs.
According to research at the Sleep to Live Institute, size does matter when it comes to mattresses for couples. Couples who had more room in bed disturbed each other less often than those who were on smaller beds. If your budget and bedroom real estate will allow it, go for the largest mattress possible. Keep in mind that a King size mattress is 16 inches wider than a queen, giving ample space for both partners.
One of the most important factors to getting a decent night’s rest is minimizing partner disturbance. When he gets up to go to the bathroom or she flops around, the other shouldn’t have to suffer. Look for a mattress that gets high marks for motion isolation technology. Mattresses with individually wrapped pocketed coils – such as the Sealy Posturpedic Plus series or Simmons BeautyRest collection — are great for absorbing movement and preventing motion from transferring throughout the coil system. Memory foam and latex mattresses are also highly effective for reducing motion transfer.
Loud snoring is much more than nuisance; it can be a sign of underlying health issues like sleep apnea. Mild cases of sleep apnea may be resolved by losing weight, avoiding alcohol and sleeping on your side. Some of the best mattresses for side sleepers are made with visco-elastic memory foam – a temperature sensitive material that molds to your body and prevents pressure points.
If you and your partner have different mattress preferences in terms of firmness and surface feel, the best solution is compromise. Many couples find that a cushion firm mattress offers the perfect balance of comfort and support. And you can always add a mattress topper on one side for extra padding.
With the right mattress and a little bit of effort, you can enjoy years of blissful sleep with your partner. Here at Mattress World Northwest, we find it a privilege to help couples find the right bed for their needs, sleep style and preferences. Shop Oregon’s #1 mattress outlet for the biggest selection of quality systems at affordable prices.