There are many different reasons why we can’t sleep, including drinking coffee late at night, exercising before bed, stress, an uncomfortable bed, and medical conditions. But did you ever think that who you share your bed with could also be a risk factor?
Whether you’re newly sharing a bed with someone or have been sharing a bed with someone for years, sharing your sleeping space could be messing with your sleep.
New research findings suggest that a person’s relationship status could impact their sleep, either for the good or the bad. The press release stated, “The quality of a person’s romantic relationship and the life stress he or she experiences at two key points in early adulthood (at age 23 and 32) are related to sleep quality and quantity in middle adulthood (at age 37).”
“Sleep is a shared behavior in many romantic relationships, and it is a strong contender for how relationships ‘get under the skin’ to affect long-term health,” the press release continued.
Worse yet, when we don’t sleep well, it can lead to more negativity in a relationship. Lead investigator of the study, Aime Gordon, explained, “Poor sleep may make us more selfish as we prioritize our own needs over our partner’s.”
Some reports suggest that many people are engaging in “sleep divorces,” which entails sleeping in different beds, either in the same room or in different rooms. Many couples who have tried this have reported an improvement in their relationship as a result.
Lead author of the Personal Relationships study, Chloe Huelsnitz, added, “Although a large body of evidence shows that relationships are important for health, we are just beginning to understand how the characteristics of people’s close relationships affect health behaviors, such as sleep. The findings of our study suggest that one way that relationships affect health behavior is through their effects on an individual’s stress.”
Not only is it essential to get a good night’s sleep, it is also equally as important to reduce stress, especially stress caused by a relationship. By achieving these two factors, you will sleep better and have a healthier relationship in the long run.
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