How You Can Help Your Partner Sleep Better
What's stopping you from getting a good night's sleep? If you're going to bed at a reasonable hour, perhaps the fault isn't in YOUR sleep habits, but in those of your partner. If your partner moves around a lot, kicks you in your sleep, snores, or is restless, it could interfere with your rest. Thankfully, there are a few simple ways you can help your partner sleep better:
Get a CPAP Machine
You'd be surprised by how many people suffer from sleep apnea! Snoring is one of the symptoms of sleep apnea, but people who wake up randomly in the middle of the night (due to breathing difficulties) are also likely to have sleep apnea. A CPAP machine can be a good way to help them breathe easy and sleep the whole night through. It takes a bit of getting used to--for the both of you--but it will improve their sleep quality.
Change Sleeping Positions
If your partner sleeps on their back, they may be snoring due to excess pressure on their throat or chest (caused by obesity). Instead, encourage them to sleep on their sides, where their weight will fall away from their respiratory tract. Changing up sleep positions is often enough to help your partner sleep better--and can make the night more comfortable for you too.
Elevate Their Head
Sleep apnea and snoring are both caused by excess weight placed on the throat and neck, which closes off the airways. But by elevating your partner's head, you ensure that gravity pulls their weight downward, away from their neck. This will reduce the pressure on their airways, helping them to breathe more easily. It's a simple change in position that can drastically improve sleep quality.
Did you know that people who drink alcohol four hours before going to bed have a higher chance of moving, flailing, and kicking in their sleep? Alcohol makes you restless as you sleep, meaning your brain is still sending electrical impulses to your muscles. By setting a cutoff time, you prevent alcohol from giving your partner a restless night.
Stress can affect every area of your life, and your sleeping habits are no exception. If your partner is under a lot of stress, it's highly likely that they will have sleep problems. Stress produces cortisol, a hormone that keeps your body in "fight or flight" mode. There's no way you can sleep in this mode, meaning your partner is going to have a hard time getting to sleep and staying asleep. Perhaps it's time you both find a way to reduce the stress levels in your home and help each other manage your anxiety.
Cool the Room
If your partner is the kind of man or woman who is restless when they are hot, it's often better to drop the room temperature. Even if YOU get cold at night, you can always bundle up. A hot sleeper will likely have a hard time staying asleep, meaning they'll toss and turn in an effort to get comfortable. By cooling the room, you make it easier for them to sleep. Plus, if you're all bundled up in blankets, your body heat is trapped, reducing the risk that they will overheat thanks to your added warmth.
Set a Sleep Schedule
Don't stay up too late, but get to bed at the same time every night. A sleep schedule is important, as it helps your body to relax in anticipation of your drifting off. You'll find you sleep much better if you follow the same schedule every night.