Looking for an easy way to enjoy better health and live longer? Simply share your bed, suggests new research in this growing field.
Extra Feet Means Better Sleep?
It seems romantic couples may indeed reap major health benefits simply from sleeping together in the same bed. Indeed, scientists contend that nocturnal bed-sharing may explain why people in close romantic relationships generally enjoy better health and live longer.
These new findings are a stark contradiction of older studies that seemed to indicate women did not sleep as well with a partner, that couples sleeping together were generally more unsettled, or that conflicts over sheet-stealing and bedroom temperature made sleeping together more hassle than it was worth.
Good sleep is critically important to health, especially cardiovascular and psychological health. Lead researcher Professor Wendy Troxel, of University of Pittsburgh , found women in stable long-term romantic relationships tended to fall asleep more easily and quickly, and woke less during the night than single women or women who had recently lost or gained a partner during the study’s duration.
Lie Your Way to Better Health
Lie in bed with your partner, (not to be confused of course with deliberately misleading your partner in bed!).
And although the science behind these findings is still in its infancy, initial results seem to support the idea that shared sleeping habits promote feelings of security, safety and intimacy, thus reducing levels of stress hormone cortisol. It’s also thought that sharing a bed may boost levels of oxytocin—often referred to as the love hormone or moral molecule—which as well as promoting relationship connection and intimacy is also known to decrease stress and anxiety generally. Even more curiously, oxytocin is produced in the same region of the brain responsible for regulating sleep/wake cycles.
It seems that the benefits of sharing a bed with the one you love might outweigh the drawbacks by some degree.
What Are Your Thoughts? Is sleeping with someone better or worse for your sleep? And better or worse for your relationship?