A Good Night's Sleep Or Good Sex? Do Mattresses Force Us To Choose?

By Deborah Dunham for Blisstree

Which would you rather have: good sleep or good sex? This is the dilemma that many couples are facing when it comes time to buy a new mattress. It seems that sales of those super-plush mattresses are on the rise, and with good reason -- we sleep better on them. But, according to a recent Barron's report, they also have a serious downside -- bad sex.

New York sex therapist Sari Eckler explained it best to Barron's:

There's a lack of resistance for the knees and feet. And whoever is on the bottom is sinking into the bed.

Or, as an owner of one of these plush mattresses wrote on an Internet message board:

It's like trying to do it in quicksand.

Ah, point taken.

The type of mattresses, in particular, that are the culprit for bad sex are memory-foam mattresses. And regardless of what happens -- or doesn't happen -- on them, they continue to be the fastest-growing segment of mattresses out there. In fact, their market share has gone from 14 percent to almost 20 percent in the past eight years.

Meaning, those of us in the market for a new mattress value sleep over sex. Or at least sex under the sheets. But who can blame us? Insomnia sucks, and roughly 60 million Americans suffer from it.

As Gayle Greene, author of "Insomniac", explained to NPR, few people realize just how debilitating sleep deprivation can be:

Sleep is the fuel of life. It's nourishing; it's restorative. And when you are deprived of it, you are really deprived of a basic kind of sustenance.

She went on to explain that people who suffer from insomnia or any sleep disruptions will do whatever it takes to keep it away:

I don't manage this beast. I live with it. I live around it. I bed down with it every night, gingerly, cautiously, careful not to provoke it. I do my best to placate it, domesticate it, dull its claws, avoid its fangs, knowing that at any moment it can pounce on me and tear me to bits.

And for many of us, that means choosing a plush mattress. Even if that means sex needs to take place elsewhere. Kitchen table, anyone?

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