When a couple is in the honeymoon phase, neither partner can do little wrong, especially when it comes to spending horizontal time. So where does it all go horribly wrong? For some it never does. They’re the ones lucky enough to have partners who don’t steal bedclothes, who don’t snore, thrash around, read too late, forget to turn off alerts on their phone, sleep talk, have too many useless decorative cushions, emit certain rancid odours, watch TV in bed and so on. Twelve percent of couples end up sleeping solo- which isn’t ideal for the relationship. Here’s some of the most common problems that couples encounter, and some solutions too.
A to ZZZZ of snoring fixes
Snoring is the number one bed-time complaint, and it can drive couples nuts. The quickest way to fix the problem is to get yourself some earplugs. If you can, go to bed before your partner does too so you fall asleep before the racket starts. Snoring is often related to sleeping positions, with lying on the back a common cause. A gentle prod to get your partner on their side can help, although this often will disturb their sleep too. You could try putting up a ‘pillow wall’, which might discourage your partner from rolling onto their back. Another quite weird but effective tactic is to sew a tennis ball or similar into a pyjama top. Your partner could look at any number of more long term solutions, like losing weight, addressing sleep apnoea, or cutting back on drinking.
Thrashing, tossing and turning.
That dream where you get whacked in the face or kicked in the shins? For some it’s a reality that happens every night when their partner lashes out in their sleep. A bigger mattress is an obvious solution, as it will physically put you out of harm’s way. If you want to get really serious about it – and long term, that’s advisable – you need to start looking at the reason for the restlessness at night.
It could be anything from chronic stress, anxiety, nutritional imbalances or any number of medical conditions. Best leave that to the experts and get professional advice. That said, eating too much right before bed is an obvious cause of restlessness and overactive dreams.
If your partner is a constantly thieving the sheets or doona, it’s probably due to the above reasons. A smart short term solution is to start using two single sheets- but with the same shared doona or blanket. That way your partner will only end up wrapping themselves in the sheet, and not destroying the nice pockets of warmth you’ve been cultivating.
Mamma and papa bear in the Goldilocks story got it right- they slept in separate beds with different levels of softness. All is not lost if you like a mattress with a chopping-board like firmness but your partner prefers to sink into a cloud. You don’t have to push together two single beds like it’s a hotel- these days there are smart mattress solutions, where you can adapt your side of your bed to suit yourself, with soft medium and firm settings.
Turn off the screens
Bringing technology into the bedroom has become the norm. We’re getting more and more addicted to screens- you’re on one right now, in case you need evidence! Trouble is, research shows that watching any sort of screen shortly before bed can have a very real (and bad) impact on how you sleep. Other sleeping related problems can begin when your partner watches TV or uses a device in bed. The light and the sound can be seriously annoying, and deprive you of your much needed rest. Worse, if the phone isn’t muted, random notifications and alerts can go off in the middle of the night. The solution? Try to keep the bedroom a screen–free sanctuary. Or at bare minimum, make sure your phone is muted, vibrate switched off and disconnect from Wi-Fi or mobile data so emails, tweets, posts and alerts don’t bring your sleep to a jarring halt. And if the screen simply has to bet on, insist your partner wears headphones.
Luxi takes everything to do with mattresses and sleeping very seriously. Watch out for more articles coming soon.