We’ve all been there. You know the feeling when you or your partner are lying in bed for what feels like an eternity. Neither of you wants to break the silence to confirm that the other person can’t sleep either, so you start to feel self-conscious until someone finally tosses back the covers and says, “I can’t sleep!”
If you’re trying to be extra quiet about your sleepless nights, the two of you might not even mention the restless nights until you’re already feeling sleep deprived. At that point, insomnia could be affecting your health ...and your relationship. You need tips for better sleep that will get you results ASAP.
When it comes to your health, it’s important to get valid information so that you can begin creating real lifestyle changes. No more sorting through sleep myths; it’s time to get down to the basics and learn how to sleep as a couple and wake up rested and energized.
Tips for Couples Sleeping Together
We’ve rounded up the top tips for getting better sleep quality for you and your partner. Some of these insights can apply to solo sleepers as well, but they’re especially helpful for people who share a bed. Practice great sleep habits night after night and you’ll begin to see and feel the difference in your mental and physical health, not to mention the health of your relationship.
1. Turn Your Bedroom Into a Restful Retreat
Our tips for better sleep for couples start with changing the way you think about your sleep space. Sleep experts agree that in order for couples to get a restful night’s sleep, they need to think of their bedroom as a sanctuary reserved for sleep and sex only. That means not spending your work-from-home days building presentations from the comfort of your bed, as tempting as that sounds. And you definitely don’t want to balance your finances together before saying, “Goodnight.” Daytime activities like that are not relaxing and they can affect the way you feel when it’s actually time to tuck in for the night.
Instead, reserve your bedroom for sleep, sex and relaxing activities that help you wind down to sleep. These might include reading for pleasure (put those work reports down!) or doing some light stretching. Remember to keep these activities focused on sleep. If it seems like you’re reading a page turner or you’re stuck on a more difficult pose, conclude this pre-sleep activity or go into the other room to finish. Many couples find that guided meditation can help them clear their minds and fall asleep. Practicing meditation together has the added benefit of building time together into your schedule and ending the day on a positive note.
As for sex, don’t worry about that disrupting you or your partner’s sleep. In fact, having sex releases the hormone prolactin, which actually helps you fall asleep quickly. Plus, intimacy has a naturally relaxing and stress-reducing effect for people and their partners. We’re not making this up. It’s actually one of the best tips for couples sleeping together to get more rest—it just happens to be fun, too. You can learn more about it in this WebMD report… but wait until morning.
2. Put Away Your Electronic Devices
This rule does not apply just to cell phones. This includes all laptops, tablets, TVs and any other devices that could be emitting artificial blue light. When this blue light is emitted, it produces daytime hormones, like cortisol, which results in staying up even later. Not only will this tip help you feel sleepy earlier, resulting in helping you fall asleep quicker, but it will also improve your overall quality of sleep. Yes, that means watching your favorite shows together needs to happen before you turn in for the night.
If you’re finding yourself running to Google for answers on “how to go to sleep,” putting down your device is an exceptional start. It might be difficult to put away your device before bed, but once you’ve practiced this sleep advice, you won’t miss the late-night trivia research or social media rabbit holes. You’ll be too busy counting Zs to be counting sheep.
3. Soothe Your Senses
As you can tell, the best tips for better sleep quality are very pleasant. It’s important to soothe your senses, not rile them up for more activity. This includes your senses of smell, touch and hearing. You can address them with aromatherapy, a comfortable bed and gentle ambient noise. Let’s consider each tip individually.
Aromatherapy Tips for Better Sleep
In an article about aromatherapy for HuffPost, psychiatrist Dr. Marlynn Wei describes how humans subconsciously connect scents with memories and emotions. Dr. Wei also notes how certain essential oils can help practically anyone reduce stress and experience restful sleep. Our bodies crave pattern and love routine. So, if every night you use a soothing scented oil product on your skin or in your bedroom, your mind will naturally associate that scent with sleep and your blood pressure may even decrease, allowing for deep relaxation. The most sleep-inducing aromatherapy oils include lavender, bergamot, ylang ylang and clary sage. Make sure you and your partner select your aromatherapy together, as botanical ingredients can lead to allergies—they come from plants after all.
A Comfortable Bed for a Good Night’s Sleep
Your sense of touch is very involved in getting a restful night’s sleep because this is the sense that registers temperature and pressure. Consider these touch-related issues in your bedroom:
- The right temperature: You may have heard that you should keep your thermostat turned to a cooler temperature at night to mimic your sleeping body temperature, but this report from WebMD suggests that selecting a comfortable setting for you and your partner is more important.
- A comfortable mattress: Finding a mattress that gives both you and your partner a great night’s sleep can be tricky because comfort is subjective. Your best bet is to find an adjustable bed designed for couples, like one of our groundbreaking isense dual firm control mattresses.
- Breathable bedding: Selecting the right linens is more important than you might think. Breathable natural fibers like bamboo and cotton help regulate your body temperature and prevent sweating, which can be very uncomfortable.
Relaxing Sounds for Better Sleep Quality
According to the National Sleep Foundation, 74 percent of Americans feel it’s important to have a quiet bedroom to get a good night’s sleep. Unfortunately, many of us live in areas with outside noise, like neighbors who come and go at all hours, stray animals or early morning construction work. The good news is that white noise does an excellent job of reducing outside noises. This, in turn, reduces your chances of being disrupted while you’re trying to rest. Running a fan, air conditioner, humidifier or white noise machine can assist in masking any noise from inside or outside of the house. It can also be fun to go through the different sounds and tunes with your partner.
4. Stop Looking at the Clock
This one seems like a no-brainer, yet we all do it out of habit. What’s the first thing you do when you wake up in the night or can’t fall asleep? Every time we look at the clock, we automatically read the time and instantly begin counting down the hours until we must wake up and start our day. This only adds to your stress when your body is trying to rest. To be able to see what time it is, you’re probably picking up your device, which in turn, immediately flashes your body with the blue light it emits, or you’re checking a clock, usually an alarm clock to be exact. That’s a lot of sleep-sabotaging behaviors that go against the best tips for better sleep quality.
If you find that you can’t fall asleep at night, and you’re staring at the clock, turn the clock around, or remove it from your bedroom. If you’re worried about not having an alarm in your room to wake you in time in the morning, try an old-fashioned twin bell alarm clock. Typically, they run cheaper than digital alarm clocks, and you’ll find that you’re getting deeper sleep from removing the light and stress of your old clock.
Putting Tips for Better Sleep Into Practice
The number one thing to take away from this article is to overcome stressing or thinking too much about how you’re having trouble falling asleep. It’s a vicious cycle when all you’re thinking about is staying awake.
To set your new sleep habits up for success, allow yourself at least 30 minutes to settle your brain down and prepare for sleep before going to bed. It’s time to say “so long” to counting sheep. Turn down the lights, set the mood. Avoid all devices, take a scented bath and talk to your partner or read a book. And for the sake of your health, stop looking at the clock during resting hours. After a busy and long day, you deserve the break for your body and mind. We hope you see the results of our tips for better sleep soon. At isense, we believe it’s never too late to start a healthy habit, and getting a great night’s sleep is one of the healthiest things you can do as an individual and a couple.