As we celebrate National Bed Month in the UK, it’s the perfect time to shine a light on the sleep habits causing bedtime discord among couples. 

 A recent survey at MattressNextDay has uncovered the top 10 sleep practices that tend to spark arguments between partners.

9pm is when most couples are clashing about sleep habits

According to the data, the most common time people struggle to cope with their partner’s bedtime habits is 9 pm. Given that this time is one hour before the ‘golden hour’ for sleep, it’s not surprising. For adults, it’s recommended you sleep between 10 and 11 pm for cardiovascular health. 

Millennials struggle most with their partner’s sleep habits  

Those aged between 35-44 complain the most about their partner’s sleeping habits. This could be because they have lived with their partner for, around, six years now according to the stats (people most commonly move in together between the ages of 25-29), and we could be seeing the start of the ‘seven-year itch’. Gen Z, on the other hand, has the least complaints about their partner’s bedtime quirks, however, that could likely be due to the lower number of people living together at that age.


65% overwhelmingly vote snoring as the worst sleep issue

Around 44% of men and 28% of women snore. But that doesn’t stop it from being the most annoying sleep habit, as cited by 65% of people who entered our competition survey. 

Repeatedly waking up due to your partner’s snoring can lead to sleep deprivation and even relationship issues. Snoring is one of the main reasons partners have separate bedrooms. But, research has shown that sleeping in the lateral position (on your side) can reduce snoring significantly. 

Martin Seeley, CEO and sleep expert at MattressNextDay, explains “Snoring happens when the air cannot flow freely through your airway. When the airway gets blocked or narrowed, breathing causes the upper airway to vibrate and this results in the noise you hear. While it is common, snoring can also indicate underlying health issues so it is important to get checked out.”

40% of couples have duvet wars

Duvet wars are a common argument between couples with almost half (40%) voting it as the worst sleep habit of their partners. Further to that, a survey found that women are more likely to steal the duvet. 

The Scandi sleep method of using two duvets rather than one can help minimise this sleep disruption. Searches for ‘separate duvet’ have increased by 125% in the last three months and 80% in the past year.

Sleep-talking is the third most hated sleeping habit among couples

Ranked as the third least favoured sleep behaviour, sleep-talking is experienced by up to 66% of individuals, more commonly observed in children than adults. While not inherently dangerous, frequent sleep-talking can lead to sleep disruptions and even insomnia.

Bad breath is more of a sleep issue than partners watching TV in bed

Sleeping with an open mouth increases the likelihood of morning breath due to reduced saliva production during sleep. The decrease in saliva allows bacteria to accumulate, contributing to unpleasant odours. 

5 expert tips for sleeping soundly with your partner

1) Make sure the bedroom is just for intimacy and sleep 

One guaranteed way to impact your sleep is by introducing electronics and other distractions to your bedroom. To avoid this, make it a haven for intimacy and sleep. That way, when you are in bed, your brain knows that this is a place for sleep and you’ll spend less time trying to fall asleep. 

2) Always cuddle before going to sleep 

Cuddling releases serotonin which is otherwise known as your ‘happy hormone’, as well as oxytocin or the ‘cuddle hormone’. You might not realise but this plays a huge role in your circadian rhythm, which is your sleep/wake cycle. The emotions released reduce cortisol, which is what makes you feel alert when you wake. As that is reduced, you will feel less stressed and able to fall into a sounder sleep so you should always cuddle before sleep


3) Get separate covers 

Sleeping with separate covers can significantly reduce sleep disruptions, particularly if you or your partner toss and turn throughout the night. It’s also a bonus if one of you sweats in the night and the other requires more insulation. 

4) Or opt for a bigger mattress 

If you do spend the night waking each other up by duvet or bed hogging, a bigger mattress may be in order. A super king mattress is a popular choice for couples needing more space during the night.

5) Try sleep accessories and play with different scents

To try and align your sleep schedule, sleep accessories could help. If one of you tends to get disrupted in the night, invest in an eye mask and some ear plugs to block out any external sounds and light sources.

You could also try different types of sleep ‘noise’ to find the perfect solution to your issues. Start simple with natural sounds such as waves and rain before switching it up if that doesn’t help. Alternatively, you could try sleep scents to help you drift off. Lavender and sandalwood are natural sedatives, while Neroli promotes a very relaxed and slightly hypnotic feeling.

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