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Adventures in Sleep

The Case of His and Hers

Published March 31, 2009 2:27 PM by Amy Reavis
Several times over the last month I have had his and her patients.  They are usually husband and wife, although I have had mother and daughter or father and son.  It always amazes me that they are so incredibly linked.

One particular couple snored in unison.  They were in different rooms and they were wired for their study.  Their sleep onset was within minutes of each other.  They snored at about the same pitch so as not to disturb each others' sleep.  They also woke up within minutes of each other to go to the bathroom.  They had created these habits over years of living together you would think, but I have seen other things in the lab that make me wonder.

I have had complete strangers go into REM at almost exactly the same time.  I know that circadian rhythms can be similar but it always made me question.  How can two people sync that closely?  It does not happen all the time but it has happened quite a few.

The case of the married couple just shows you that there is so much more then enjoying your time together.  They have been married for 40 years and they have become so ingrained in each others' lives that their breathings syncs and their snoring syncs and even the time they get up has become routine.  I wonder what will happen when they start on their CPAPs together. 

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    Adventures in Sleep
    Occupation: Sleep technicians
    Setting: Various sleep facilities
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