As an insomnia specialist I’ve spent over 15 years focusing on just one thing, helping people to sleep well, so they can live better. Over the years, there are certain questions that I’ve come across time and time again. One of these? How can I sleep better when my partner’s ruining my sleep?
Sleeping well with a partner is a really common issue for many people. Whether it’s snoring, conflicting sleep patterns (night owl and day lark), or simply too much tossing and turning keeping you awake, if your partner’s causing you issues when it comes to getting a good night’s sleep, you’re not alone.
So, if you’re someone who’s struggling to sleep well because of their partner, here are some tips you may find help you both sleep well and live better, together!
If your partner is a snorer, it goes without saying that this is likely to have a negative impact on your sleep. Not only can the noise keep you awake, but it can actually put pressure on you to fall asleep quickly too, as you’ll want to make sure you drift off before they do, so you can avoid having to try and fall asleep whilst you’re dealing with the noise of snoring.
This pressure to fall asleep can trigger adrenaline and anxiety, which can lead to a longer-term issue with bed and sleep, as you begin to associate these negative feelings with your sleep itself, rather than the snoring that started them in the first place.
So, if it’s snoring that’s causing you problems, and your partner’s snoring is bad, it’s worth considering they get a sleep apnea test. Sleep apnea is when someone struggles to reach deeper sleep as their throat muscles relax and they wake themselves up with a snore. This is very disruptive for the sufferer but also the bed partner too.
Conflicting sleep patterns
If you’re a night owl, but your partner prefers an early night, you may find you end up going to bed earlier than your natural rhythm requires. However, rather than this meaning you get a better, longer night’s sleep, this can actually lead to too much time in bed awake as you try to force sleep to come.
Unfortunately, this can lead to insomnia, as the longer we spend in bed awake, the more we connect our bed to wakefulness, which can trigger anxiety and begin a negative cycle around how we view bed and how easy we find it to fall asleep.
So, if this sounds familiar, my top tip is to stick to your own routine. While this may feel as though you’re spending more time apart from your partner, realistically you are simply reducing your time in bed awake, which isn’t very restful anyway! You can also still go to bed at the same time, chat and have a cuddle, but then if you’re not tired yet you can head back downstairs and wait until your natural bedtime to return to bed.
With both these issues, snoring and conflicting sleep patterns, whatever steps you and your partner take, you may simply discover you can’t share a bed together! It’s important to remember, this isn’t the end of the world. Many people feel they can’t consider separate beds as an option, as it’s not very romantic, but it’s worth weighing up the cost that poor sleep is having on your relationship anyway, thinking about how much more your relationship would benefit if you were both getting a better night’s sleep.
About the author:
Kathryn Pinkham is founder of The Insomnia Clinic, one of the UK’s only specialist insomnia services, and for the past 15 years she has focused on just one thing, helping people to sleep well so that they can live their life to the fullest. Kathryn’s step-by-step process has helped thousands of people improve the quality of their sleep and transform their lives.
If you’re struggling with your sleep due to a partner, or another reason entirely, why not try Kathryn’s Sleep Well, Live Better Course? Teaching you how to fall asleep easily and sleep through the night, many people see improvements in just a few days.
Providing simple information and a step-by-step process to fix your sleep, the course will clearly guide you through the simple steps to improve your sleep, including everything you would receive in face-to-face sessions. Plus, Kathryn is there to provide ongoing support throughout the entire programme.