Are you sleeping in a different room because your partner is snoring? If you are, you’re not alone. The New York Times reports that 25% of couples sleep in separate rooms due to snoring and that 60% of custom homes will be constructed with dual master bedrooms by 2015.
While partners of snorers reported better sleep when sleeping alone, the majority also stated that the arrangement had a negative impact on their relationship.
When couples sleep apart, one of the first things to suffer is their sex life. Moreover, Tina B. Tessina, Ph.D. (aka "Dr. Romance"), a psychotherapist and author of Money, Sex and Kids: Stop Fighting About the Three Things That Can Ruin Your Marriage, confirms that "sleeping apart can contribute to the disconnect that plagues marriage and relationships." Instead of spontaneous interaction, couples have to make a planned effort to meet up. Over time, the loss of sexual activity can lead to a lack of intimacy and bonding.
Spending time in bed together is crucial for couples because it is devoid of the distractions of work, children and obligations. In addition to sex, couples cuddle, touch, and chat, which is an important part of the bonding process that holds relationships together.
Without private time, couples may only interact with each other when dealing with daily activities, which makes them more housemates than intimate partners. This lack of bonding inevitably leads to one feeling distant from the other. Furthermore, getting accustomed to not having sex can reduce the sex drive in both partners.
To avoid the untimely death of your sex life, have your partner’s snoring treated. Doing so will not only improve your relationship but also address sleep apnea, which affects almost 30% of snorers.
Sleep apnea is a medical condition that causes interrupted breathing and a lack of oxygen to vital organs. As you can imagine, sleep apnea can pose serious health risks such as heart disease and stroke which may physically limit people from having sex. In addition, research has shown a strong link between sleep apnea and erectile dysfunction. Men can suffer from reduced testosterone production as a result which may, in turn, cause impotence. Men are not alone. A study performed by the International Society for Sexual Medicine found that women with sleep apnea were also at significant risk of serious sexual dysfunction and decreased libido.
Snoring also takes its toll on your bed partner. People who sleep next to loud snorers report high levels of fatigue, stress, sleepiness, a lower quality of life, and an increased risk of depression due to interrupted sleep. This often leads to a lack of physical intimacy, causing many couples to wonder if they should remain together.
The good news is that snoring and sleep apnea are very treatable. In most cases, snoring, fatigue, erectile dysfunction, decreased libido and other health issues that may be preventing sex can be reversed with proper treatment. Talk to a snoring doctor to determine which treatment is best for you.
Dr. Donald M. Sesso, the Director of The Pennsylvania Snoring and Sleep Institute, is the only triple certified snoring doctor in the tri-state area. He specializes in the surgical treatment of obstructive sleep apnea and sinus disorders and is a Board Certified ENT Otolaryngologist in Head and Neck Surgery, Facial Plastic Surgery, and Sleep Medicine.