This Is Why You Sleep So Badly The First Night In Bed With Someone New

But it's only temporary, phew.

Screen shot 2016-04-28 at 18.02.12

Let’s face it, no-one looks their best when they wake up after a night on the tiles.

And if you’re in an unfamiliar bed, things always seem to be much more heightened – your phone battery is low, you’re still wearing half your make-up and you most definitely didn’t sleep well.

While we can’t offer solutions for the first two, it turns out there is a pretty solid scientific explanation for number three. Our brains are wired to stay somewhat alert to protect us on the first night in new surroundings, which is why you always sleep so restlessly in a new bed.


The phenomenon, known as the “first night effect,” is documented in a new study published in Current Biology.

Researchers at Brown University examined the sleep patterns of 35 people who were spending a night away from home, and discovered that one side of their brain stayed more alert for the first night in a new place.

We’re not the only ones who demonstrate evidence of “unihemispheric sleep” (when one hemisphere of the brain is active while the other shuts down). Other mammals like whales and dolphins have brains that do the same. It’s all part of our inbuilt defensive mechanisms.

Thankfully though, the effect seems to subside after one night, so if things go well with that Tinder date, you can be assured of a good night’s kip on the second rendez-vous.


Have your say

More like this