Dial in Your Sleep, Save Your Relationship: Wendy Troxel

How can we sleep better? How is sleep a social activity? What are the gender differences between male and female sleep? How does your partner’s sleep impact your sleep? What strategies can couples implement to co-sleep more successfully? Why should we not take melatonin? How do you get your partner to not snore? 

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Wendy Troxel is a clinical psychologist, author, and sleep medicine expert. She joins us to discuss sleep, how sleep is actually a social activity for many and needs to be optimized as such, the physical and mental issues that come from sleep loss, the gender differences between male and female sleep, how to better co-sleep with your partner, why we should not take melatonin, how to deal with a snoring partner, and more. 

“Sleep in the real world doesn’t occur in a vacuum. Sleep in the real world is often messy and noisy, and really for most people, shared. In fact, two-thirds of adults regularly share a bed with a bed partner.”

“We can’t neglect to consider the social environment when we think about risk factors for sleep as well as who is affected by our sleep.” 

“Sleep itself is a highly active and dynamic state; it is not just one solitary state through the night like a light switch going off.”

“Sleep is critically important for our cognitive function, our memory. Sleep loss is associated with cognitive decline, even increased risk for Alzheimer’s disease. We know it affects our concentration, our productivity, our ability to problem solve. Sleep is also profoundly linked with our mental health and our wellbeing.” 

“Women are twice as likely to have insomnia as compared to men.” 

“Because there’s so much stigma attached to the marital bed, there’s just the assumption that all couples, from the time they fall in love and are together, their sleep habits should be perfectly compatible; and that’s not always the case.”

“There is not a one-size-fits-all sleeping strategy for all couples, and the more we subscribe to this belief, the more we’re pigeonholing people and couples into strategies that may not work best for them.” 

Listen to the SuperAge podcast wherever you get your pods. 

Connect with Wendy:
Sharing the Covers: Every Couple’s Guide to Better Sleep

See medical disclaimer below. ↓


  1. I love conversations about sleep.

    I have always taken sleep seriously. When I was married we had two twin beds next to each other and separate bedding to minimize the impact of partner movement. Last year I started tracking my sleep with the Oura ring. I had used watches before but I don’t like sleeping with a watch.

    I will also share that prostate issues were causing me to get up too many times in the night with urgency to pee and Flowmax has really helped me with that.

    I had been overusing melatonin and have tried to reduce the dose. I was taking 5mg upon sleeping and if/when I woke during the night another 5mg. I tried to cut that back to 1.25mg on sleep and another 1.25mg if/when I woke up. I found that this cut was too drastic for me (n of 1) and I measurably wasn’t sleeping as well. I have reset to 2.5mg of melatonin upon sleeping and 2.5mg if I wake. This has been working. After a few months of this, I’ll try reducing again.

    By the way, at about the 55 minute mark, the interview audio is overlayed with your exit dialog. I noticed this on another podcast as well.

  2. Hi Gregory,

    Thank you so much for letting us know about error in the posted recording. Fixing it immediately. So embarrasing!

    Melatonin is a tricky one, and I think you approach is the correct one: N=1. Do what works for you.

    All my best,



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The ideas expressed here are solely the opinions of the author and are not researched or verified by AGEIST LLC, or anyone associated with AGEIST LLC. This material should not be construed as medical advice or recommendation, it is for informational use only. We encourage all readers to discuss with your qualified practitioners the relevance of the application of any of these ideas to your life. The recommendations contained herein are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. You should always consult your physician or other qualified health provider before starting any new treatment or stopping any treatment that has been prescribed for you by your physician or other qualified health provider. Please call your doctor or 911 immediately if you think you may have a medical or psychiatric emergency.


Taylor Marks
Taylor Marks is a certified holistic health coach and professionally trained chef from The Institute of Culinary Education. Her passions include the latest research in health science, culinary arts, holistic wellness, and guiding others towards feeling their best.


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