Physiotherapy & Other Considerations For Lower Back Pain
Limiting pain and avoiding additional musculoskeletal challenges is reason enough to pay attention to how you sleep. However, getting more quality sleep each night can also help you avoid the additional physical and mental health impacts that go with chronic sleep deprivation. Of course, a healthy diet can also help enhance your quality of sleep. Avoid having coffee or other caffeinated drinks before bedtime as it can disrupt sleep and only stick to foods that can help you sleep.
If you still experience lower back pain, despite modifying your sleeping position, relieving lower back pain through physiotherapy and exercise may help. Physiotherapy is an effective nonsurgical treatment option that includes exercises, massage, core strengthening, ultrasound, manual therapy, and more to alleviate back pain.
If you are struggling with lower back pain, contact us today and let us show you why, at Physiomed, Healthier Starts Here.
Best Sleeping Position For Lower Back Pain
Sleep in Fetal Position
Fetal position is known to support our back and relieve any lower back pain. If you sleep on the side with the knees drawn up, your joints in the spine will open up, relieving any pressure on the structures of the back. You can also place a pillow between your legs for a better support.
While sleeping in this position, make sure to avoid any spine curvature. Make sure to place the pillow so that it is positioned between your knees and your ankles at the same time. Choose a thicker pillow for a better support.
If you sleep on the side, alternate it by sleeping on the right and on the left side as well. If you sleep on the same side all night long, you will end up with pain and even muscle imbalance.
For pregnant women, the best sleeping position for lower back pain is to sleep on their left side in order to avoid any pressure on the large blood structures of the body which can restrict the blood flow to the fetus.
Use an Extra Pillow Under the Knees
If you prefer sleeping on your back, you can use an extra pillow under your knees for supporting your back. This will flatten your back and avoid a large curvature of your lower back. For extra support, while sleeping on your back, you can put a rolled up towel under your lower back.
Dont Sleep on Your Stomach
How to Get in and out of the Bed
You already know the best sleeping position for lower back pain. But have you ever thought about correct ways of getting in and out of the bed? Here is how to do it.
Find The Right Sleeping Position: How To Sleep With Lower Back Pain And Sciatica
The link between lower back pain and sleep can be tied to how your sleeping position interferes with spinal alignment. If you adopt sleeping positions that involve putting pressure on or twisting your lumbar spine, youre likely to experience stiffness and pain in your lower back. Its best to find a perfect sleeping position thats comfortable for you. Try these sleeping positions to make your sleeping much more effortless.
Try sleeping on your side, place a pillow between your knees, and partially bend your knees towards your chest. Slightly bending your knees will help balance your body and reduce pressure or stress on your lumbar spine. Adding a pillow between your knees makes this sleeping position more comfortable, improves the alignment of your hips and pelvis, and can reduce pressure on nerves, thereby helping to relieve sciatica pain while sleeping.
If youre a back sleeper, consider using a pillow under your knees or legs for support. You can also roll up a towel and place it under your lower back to support your natural spine curve and reduce pressure on the joints and discs in the lumbar spine.
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The Best Sleeping Positions To Help With Lower Back Pain
The best sleeping positions to help with lower back pain may surprise you. When it comes to this topic, Information on the internet can be misleading, so weve broken down the best sleeping positions and their benefits so you do not have to decipher fact from fiction. Sleep position modifications and other changes to day-to-day routines can help manage and prevent back pain while promoting restful sleep. Continue reading below for more information on the best sleeping positions for lower back pain, alignment tips, and more.
What can I do?Do you deal with lower back pain? Youre not alone. The Global Burden of Disease study named lower back pain the leading cause of disability across the globe. Whats even more interesting is that most back pain isnt caused by serious medical conditions, like cancer or arthritis. Instead, its often brought on by stress or strain from bad posture, awkward sleeping positions, and other lifestyle habits. Here are the best sleeping positions to try if you have lower back pain, as well as some other things you can do to get a better nights rest.
1. Sleep on your side with a pillow between your kneesIf lying flat on your back feels uncomfortable, try shifting over to your side:
On The Front With The Face Down
Sleeping on the front is generally unhealthy when a person turns their head to the side, twisting the spine and placing additional stress on the neck, shoulders, and back.
To avoid this, try lying face down. To do so comfortably:
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Weighted Blanket Side Effects
There are a few potential side effects to using a weighted blanket, although these are typically mild and resolve on their own. The most common side effect is feeling too hot or sweaty during the night, as the extra weight can add warmth to the body. Some people also find that the pressure from the blanket is too much, causing them to feel uncomfortable or restless. In rare cases, weighted blankets have been known to cause skin irritation. If you experience any of these side effects, try adjusting the weight of the blanket or using a lighter blanket.
Does Poor Sleep Make Lower Back Pain Worse
The bad news is yes â bad sleep can actually cause back pain.
The more pain you have the harder it is to fall asleep, and moving in your sleep may trigger pain, which can wake you up. So, itâs easy to see the link between having lower back pain and not getting the sleep you need. But the link actually goes both ways.
Not getting enough sleep increases our experience of pain and lowers our pain thresholds. It can also slow down your bodyâs healing process. Plus, poor sleep tanks our energy levels and mood the next day, which makes dealing with pain much harder to do.
This goes for lower back pain specifically as well as pain in general:
- One study found poorer sleep quality was significantly related to higher pain ratings the next day in those with chronic lower back pain.
- Another study found more movement during the night was associated with lower back pain, so opting for a comfortable mattress and sleeping position are more important than ever.
- And one study even concluded: âOur findings do not indicate whether sleep disorders are a cause or a consequence of CLBPâ .
- Finally, a meta-analysis looking at 21 studies found sleep disturbance increases the likelihood of back pain by 52%. This could be due to several factors, like the increased risk of depression due to insomnia, which ups your risk of back pain, or the likelihood of reduced physical activity if you donât sleep well, which, again, ups your risk of back pain.
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How To Prevent Lower Back Pain
Lower back pain can be preventable, especially pain due to improper posture or lifting heavy objects. This means you can take steps to protect yourself and reduce your risk of back injury.
- Improve your posture: Avoid slouching. If your job requires long periods of standing, see if it is possible to alternate between resting one foot at a time on a stool or surface throughout the day.
- Lift heavy objects safely: When preparing to pick up a heavy object, bend your knees and tighten your core. Have someone else help you lift an item thats too heavy for you. If youre unsure on how to properly lift, reach out to a physical therapist or fitness expert for help.
- Quit smoking: Its never too late to experience the health benefits of quitting smoking. Ask your doctor about methods you can use to help you quit. Seek support from loved ones, and contact a tobacco cessation service.
- Drive carefully: Avoid driving long distances if you have lower back pain. If you do need to take a long-distance trip, take walking breaks every hour. Also, bring your car seat forward and upright to prevent bending when driving.
- Swap your furniture: Consider changing out your office seat and desk for ones that provide better support. Ergonomic furniture can help with supporting your back and protecting you against back injury. Work chairs with straight backs, armrests, and swivel seats can provide better support.
What To Look For In A Pillow
Your pillow should cradle your head and neck and help to support the upper portion of your spine.
If you sleep on your back, your pillow should completely fill the space between your neck and the mattress. If you sleep on your side, try using a thicker pillow to keep your head in line with the rest of your body in this position.
Whatever you do, dont place your pillow under your shoulders.
For back sleepers: You may do best with thinner pillows and those that have extra padding in the bottom to support the neck.
Memory foam is a good material that molds specifically to your own neck.
A water pillow is another option that gives firm, all-over support.
For stomach sleepers: You should aim to use the thinnest pillow possible or no pillow at all. In fact, you may try sleeping on your side while holding a body pillow. The body pillow will give you the feeling of something against your stomach while helping to align the rest of your body.
For side sleepers: You may want to look for a firm pillow. Better yet, try to find one that has an extra-wide gusset that will help with the space between your ear and shoulder. And dont forget to place a firm pillow between your knees. You may even substitute a rolled towel.
While youre at it, remember to change your pillow every 18 months or so. Those pillow protectors can be a good barrier, but pillows still hold lots of allergy triggers like mold and dust mites.
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How To Sleep With Lower Back Pain: Positions And Treatments
If you donât have lower back pain, you likely never think about that part of your body. But when you do have it, itâs all you can think about. Lower back pain during the day can get in the way of your workouts, your work, and even caring for your kids. But the pain can become a real problem at night when it stops you getting the sleep you need.
Lower back pain can not only make it hard to fall asleep, it may also wake you up in the night if you move in your sleep and trigger a pain point. Even worse? When you donât get enough sleep, your body is more sensitive to pain, meaning itâs a vicious circle of sleep loss and increased pain.
Luckily, there are a few things you can do to break the cycle. Below, we cover the best sleeping positions for those with lower back pain as well as the things you can do to help you drift off, even if your lower back is playing up.
More Than A Minor Inconvenience
Seeking relief, Americans spend over $50 billion each year just on lower back pain. Its the second most common reason people miss work, third most common reason for surgeries, and fifth most common cause of hospitalization, and its responsible for 20% of doctor visits as well. Two 2014 studies suggest back pain is the leading cause of disability worldwide.
Pain can also affect sleep. A2014 Korean studyVerified SourceNational Library of Medicine Worlds largest medical library, making biomedical data and information more accessible.View sourceof people with chronic lower back pain found that 32% of respondents experienced sleep disturbances due to pain, with those experiencing more pain reporting a higher amount of disturbances. A previousAustralian studyVerified SourceNational Library of Medicine Worlds largest medical library, making biomedical data and information more accessible.View sourcelooking at both acute and chronic back pain found that 58% of people reported disturbed sleep due to pain.
The ongoing impact of back pain in America:
- Over $50 billion in treatment costs
- 15-20% have long-term back pain
- 3-4% temporarily disabled due to back pain
- 1% of workforce disabled permanently
- 2nd most common cause of missed work
- 3rd leading reason for surgery
- Among leading reason for hospital and doctor visits
The 2015 Sleep in America poll looked at the connections between sleep, stress and pain. Over 1000 adults were surveyed, and the results found:
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How To Sleep With A Herniated Disk
Sleep on your side and lift your legs towards your chest. This is called the fetal position, which is adopted from how growing babies sleep in the womb.
The fetal position is the best option for how to sleep with a herniated disk. Due to the spine being in an open posture, you may be able to get some pain relief in this position.
Finding a way of sleeping with lower back pain can be trial and error, and if you have not consulted your doctor or chiropractor, you should experiment to find what gives you the most relief from back pain.
You can sleep on your back if you have lower back pain and it can offer relief, however, try placing a couple of pillows under your knees this will take the pressure off your back muscles and force your lower back to lay flat against the mattress.
Sleeping in the prone position or on your tummy can offer relief for back pain. You will need to place a pillow under your pelvis to release tension.
Caution should be taken when sleeping in the prone position. You may get pain relief from your back problem, but you could inadvertently create a problem in your cervical spine due to your necks unnatural position.
Tips For Sleeping With Lower Back Pain
Living with pain can detract from all areas of your life spending time with your family, enjoying activities and especially sleeping. Of all chronic pain, the most common type people experience is lower back pain. In fact, up to 80 percent of the U.S. population will experience lower back pain at some point during their lives.
If youre able to exercise and get a full nights rest, most back pain will improve in a matter of weeks. But unfortunately, pain can make sleeping difficult or next to impossible. It then becomes a horrible catch-22. You need rest to recover from back pain, but your back pain makes it hard to sleep.
Dont let lower back pain rob you of the sleep you so desperately need. There are a few things you can do to improve your sleep. Here are some tips and tricks for sleeping with back pain that could help you lull off to dreamland, leaving your pain behind.
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Why Is Back Pain Worse At Night
Hilda Simpson | Answered June 4, 2021
While you sit still for too long, such as during sleep, inflammatory chemicals accumulate in your joints, exacerbating pain and stiffness. Thats why people with inflammatory back pain can wake up in agony in the middle of night and feel stiff and achy first thing in the morning.Mar 25, 2019
Is It Better To Sit Or Lay Down With Lower Back Pain
Velma Wong | Answered August 22, 2020
Specifically, sleeping on the side or back is considered more beneficial than sleeping on the stomach. In either of these sleep positions, its easier to keep your spine supported and balanced, which relieves pressure on the spinal tissues and enables your muscles to relax and recover.Mar 18, 2022
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How Weighted Blankets Can Help People With Anxiety
For people who have anxiety, weighted blankets can be beneficial in a variety of ways. When placed into rest mode, the autonomic nervous system of an anxious person can be activated, reducing symptoms such as increased heart rate or breathing. They can even provide a sense of calm to the mind. In contrast, weighted blankets may not be the best option for people who are experiencing anxiety and are desperate for relief. People should only use weighted blankets if they are required for relief, and they should consult a doctor before starting any new treatment.