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Your Guide to Amazing Cuddles

by BetterSleep
Apr 26 • 4 min read

The importance of sleeping together for couples—in the same bed at the same time—cannot be overstated. Even better is cuddling. Contact with a loved one provides many benefits, strengthens your relationship, and might even help you sleep.

The Benefits of Sleeping Next to Someone You Love

Sleeping together and cuddling are great for your relationship and your health. Touching someone you care about releases the hormone oxytocin, which is essential for forming and strengthening bonds. Touching and cuddling also helps couples communicate. Not all communication occurs with words. You will feel closer and more connected if you cuddle more often.

Cuddling can also be good for your physical and mental health. Research shows that cuddling, touching, and massaging can lower your blood pressure, reduce pain, boost immunity, and lower stress and anxiety. Touch is also good for sleep and might deepen time spent in the important REM stage.

The Best Cuddling Positions for Sleeping

Cuddling to improve your sleep is no use if it isn’t comfortable or makes it harder to fall asleep. Not all cuddles are the same. These are some of the best cuddling positions if your goal is better sleep:

  • The Spoon. This is the classic cuddle position. Lying on your sides, one person wraps around the back of the other. The person behind is the “big spoon” and usually the taller individual. This is not a requirement, though. Play around with spoon assignments for a new experience. The spoon is especially good for enhancing feelings of safety and security.
  • The Half Spoon. Try this variation if it’s too warm to go full spoon. The big spoon lies on their back, while the little spoon lies on their side, resting their head on their partner’s chest.
  • Back-to-Back. Sleeping with your backs to each other doesn’t have to signify you’re having a fight. Instead, it’s a useful way to touch each other without getting your limbs all wrapped up together. If you want to cuddle but have a hard time falling to sleep in a spooning position, use back contact to stay connected.
  • The Leg Cuddle. Another option for limited contact is the leg cuddle. Touch or wrap legs together to cuddle and sleep. This gives you each the flexibility to use your favorite sleeping position—side, back, front—while maintaining physical contact.
  • The T-Zone. You might not want to fall asleep in this position, but it’s fun for pre-sleep bonding. One person lies on their back while the other rests their head on their partner’s stomach. You’ll hear all kinds of strange sounds, which is great for laughter and lifting the mood.

The best cuddling pose is ultimately what works for you and your partner. You both need to be comfortable with the chosen position. Try a few to find what you like. If you can’t fall asleep while cuddling, use it as a pre-bed ritual. Spend several minutes cuddling to relax your body and mind and to prepare for better sleep.

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