According to collective research by Andrea Petersen in The Wall Street Journal, sleeping with a partner in the same bed provides an array of health benefits.
Some scientists hypothesize that sleeping with a partner may be a prominent reason people in intimate relationships tend to be in better health and live longer than sad and lonely singletons. The new study challenges previous findings that women don’t sleep as well with someone else in their bed and that both sexes move around more when sleeping together.
Sleeping together promotes feelings of safety and security, which may lower levels of cortisol, a stress hormone.
“Sharing a bed may also reduce cytokines, involved in inflammation, and boost oxytocin, the so-called love hormone that is known to ease anxiety and is produced in the same part of the brain responsible for the sleep-wake cycle,” suggests the WSJ.
Research also shows that women in stable relationships actually fall asleep faster and wake less frequently than single women or those whose relationship status changed during the study.
It Strengthens Your Bond
The closer you and your partner are while you sleep, the more likely you are to feel happy with your relationship, according to a recent survey by the Edinburgh International Science Festival.
It Makes You Happier
Thank you, dopamine and serotonin! Touching someone releases these two hormones, both of which can boost your mood and help curb depression.
It Makes You Stress Less
The moment you make skin-to-skin contact, your brain tells your adrenal glands to cut back on cortisol production, which makes you feel less anxious.
It Helps You Sleep Better
When you’re not so anxious, you’re more likely to snooze at a reasonable hour, says Terri Orbuch, Ph.D., author of Finding Love Again: 6 Simple Steps to a New and Happy Relationship.
It Strengthens Your Immune System
Cuddling can stimulate your parasympathetic (otherwise known as relaxation) system, which releases serotonin, dopamine, and oxytocin. All of these feel-good hormones boost your immunity to help fend off sickness. And if you ask us, cuddling sounds way more appealing than loading up on vitamin C.
It Improves Your Sex Life
A study from the Archives of Sexual Behavior found that couples that cuddle post-sex are more satisfied with their sex lives—and their overall relationships. Enough said.
The science doesn’t stop there though. If you want to really boost your relationship happiness, you and your partner should sleep naked.
According to a poll conducted by Cotton USA, those who sleep naked are more content in relationships than those who don’t. This is good to know, considering four out of 10 people and almost half of people over 55 already snooze in the nude. (via Daily Mail)
It’s fairly intuitive; sleeping naked together builds a sense of closeness and intimacy, which in turn, strengthens your relationship.
A poll of 1,000 Brits revealed that 57 percent of couples who sleep in the nude reported being “extremely happy” in their relationships, while less than half of the PJ-clad reported the same.
Basically, science is telling us something we already knew: One really is the loneliest number.
• “Cuddlers, Rejoice! Science Proves That Sleeping With Someone Else Is Good For Your Health” published by Laura Argintar on Elite Daily
• “6 Amazing Benefits of Cuddling” by Kenny Thapoung on Women’s Health
• “The Naked Truth: Couples Who Sleep In The Nude Tend To Be Happier Together” by Madeline Concannon on Elite Daily
• Image from Benefits of Cuddling on ilovemysli.com