What Sleeping Positions Should Be Avoided
I shall bullet point this for ease of reading
- Sleeping on the front the best position to create muscle imbalances and breathing problems, remember, muscles store memory.
- The Foetal Position the most common position to sleep in, why is it bad for back pain? most people curl up so much so that the spine and lower back is being overstretched into a position which results in pain, especially when turning think the same as poor posture at the desk, just lying down.
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.
What Can I Do If I Have Acute Low Back Pain
The following advice will benefit a majority of people with back pain. If any of the following guidelines causes an increase of pain or spreading of pain to the legs, do not continue the activity and seek the advice of a physician or physical therapist.
The key to recovering from acute low back pain is maintaining the normal curve of the spine . Supporting the hollow of your back will help decrease your recovery time.
Follow these guidelines for 10 to 20 days after you experience acute low back pain:
- Sit as little as possible, and only for short periods of time .
- Sit with a back support at the curve of your back.
- Keep your hips and knees at a right angle. Your legs should not be crossed and your feet should be flat on the floor.
Here’s how to find a good sitting position when you’re not using a back support or lumbar roll:
Correct sitting position without lumbar support.
Correct sitting position with lumbar support.
- Use a back support at the curve of your back. Your knees should be at the same level or higher than your hips.
- Move the seat close to the steering wheel to support the curve of your back. The seat should be close enough to allow your knees to bend and your feet to reach the pedals.
Stooping, squatting, and kneeling
Sleeping and lying down
Other helpful tips
If you sleep on your back, put pillows under your knees and a small pillow under the small of your back.
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Best Sleeping Positions For Back Pain
The best sleeping position for lower back pain is widely considered to be on your back. This position distributes the weight along the entire spine. Placing a pillow under your knees will help to maintain the natural curve of the spine.
For those who sleep on their side, placing a firm pillow between the knees helps to maintain the natural alignment of the hips, pelvis and spine. However, if you are a side sleeper, try to alternate sides. This will help to avoid muscle imbalance and perhaps even scoliosis. In addition, side sleeping in a curled-up fetal position may help those with herniated disc pain.
Lying on your stomach is considered the worst sleeping position for back pain. However, if it is difficult to change sleeping positions, place a thin pillow underneath your hips and stomach to improve the alignment of the spine.
How To Sleep With Back Pain: 5 Tips For Relief
Back pain is an acute medical condition that causes physical mobility limitations in everyday life. The sudden onset can last up to six weeks before an individual finds relief. Considered one of the leading causes of musculoskeletal disabilities worldwide, back pain is a common trigger for the problem. More specifically, about 80 percent of adults experience low back pain at some point. While its generally a short-term impairment, if the problem isnt resolved, it can lead to chronic issues. The limitations caused by back pain can affect the completion of everyday tasks and activities. The Mayo Clinic cited radiating and shooting pains, muscle stiffness and strains as well as the need to lay in a reclined position as common signs and symptoms of back pain. The days that you have to roll yourself out of the bed shouldnt be taken lightly. Its important to recognize when something is going on back there and how to troubleshoot the situation.
Shop our most advanced mattress and our best mattress for back pain the Wave Hybrid has hyper targeted support and cooling features to help you ache less and sleep cooler.
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How To Sleep Better With Low Back Pain
Due to its complexity and how much your body depends on it, it’s no surprise that the lower back is the top hotspot for pain that may deprive you of a good night’s sleep. Research indicates that eight out of ten people experience back pain in their lifetime, and lower back pain is one of the most common reasons people visit the doctor.
Back pain ranges from short-lived to long-lasting and severe, and if you experience pain, you’re likely to experience poor sleep. Lower back pain makes it harder to find a comfortable sleeping position and get a good night’s sleep. But, how do you eliminate back pain for better sleep?
Understanding the link between lower back pain and sleep offers various approaches to finding relief and quality sleep. So, if you’re having trouble sleeping due to lower back pain, check out these tips that will help you ease pain and make your sleep much better.
The Ideal Sleep Position: On Your Back
The best position to avoid back pain is lying flat on your back. Even so, many people find it the hardest way to enjoy deep sleep. For optimal spine alignment, place one pillow underneath your head or neck and another underneath your knees. If youre pregnant, however, you should avoid this position because it decreases blood circulation to the heart and baby.
Read Also: What Causes Lower Back And Hip Pain
On The Side With A Pillow Between The Knees
Lying on the side can be comfortable, but it can pull the spine out of alignment, straining the lower back.
It can be easy to correct this issue by placing a firm pillow between the knees. This raises the upper leg, restoring the natural alignment of the hips, pelvis, and spine.
To get comfortable in this position:
Anyone who usually moves from their side to their front may also want to try hugging a large pillow against their chest and stomach to help keep their back aligned.
How To Sleep Better With Lower Back Pain
Getting quality sleep is an important part of recovering from lower back pain, but sleeping well may seem like a tall task when your back hurts. While theres no guaranteed way to get better sleep, certain practical tips can help:
- Find a supportive sleeping position. Ideally, you can sleep on your side, but regardless of the position, make sure your spine is well-aligned. If needed, use extra pillows for body support.
- Be careful with alcohol and caffeine. Though alcohol may help you doze off, it can throw off the quality of your sleep. As a stimulant, caffeine can make it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep.
- Try relaxation methods. Finding techniques to wind down can put you in the right state of mind for sleep with less focus on pain.
- Reduce potential sleep disruptions. If you inadvertently wake up at night, pain may make it harder to get back to sleep. For that reason, try to eliminate excess noise and light from your bedroom or block them out with a sleep mask or earplugs. Set your bedroom to a temperature that will be comfortable throughout the night.
Focusing on sleep hygiene can improve your sleep habits so that you can sleep better both during and after episodes of lower back pain.
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Alternative Treatments For Back Pain Relief
No two people experience back pain and sleep problems in the exact same way, so its worth exploring a variety of techniques until you figure out what works best for you. You dont have to only treat your back pain before you sleep either.
Other ways to relieve lower back pain include:
- Using a heating pad or electric blanket
- Massaging area with ointment that includes cayenne pepper, which reduces pain
- Practicing progressive muscle relaxation to help with physical and mental tension
- Acupuncture sessions, which has been shown to decrease pain after 12 months
A doctor or other healthcare professional can also make personalized recommendations for sleeping better with lower back pain, and prescribe medication as needed.
On The Back With Knee Support
Lying on the back evenly distributes the bodys weight, helping to minimize pressure and ensure a good alignment of the head, neck, and spine.
Placing a small pillow under the knees may provide additional support and help maintain the natural curve of the spine.
To get comfortable in this position:
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Articles On Back Pain
Back pain can make getting through the day hard, but it can make getting a good nightâs sleep even harder. It can be tough to find a comfortable position so you can doze off. And you might not even be able to get in and out of bed without pain.
But good sleep is essential to your health, and an important part of your overall well-being. Studies have found that Americans who ranked their quality of life very good or excellent slept an average of 18 to 23 minutes longer than those who considered their health and quality of life poorer. But studies have shown that not getting enough sleep may actually make you more sensitive to pain.
If youâre having trouble getting enough shut-eye because of back pain, try these tips that can make sleeping a little easier.
Things You Should Know About Sleep And Low Back Pain
It’s hard to sleep with any kind of pain. But in particular can make it very difficult to get a good night’s rest. That’s because your back is more sensitive to your positioning than other parts of the body, says HSS spine specialist .
“During the day, people are able to move around and reposition in ways that can help relieve back pain,” he explains. “At night, it’s hard to keep repositioning while also getting the restful sleep you need.”
But just because back pain is getting in the way of your slumber doesn’t mean you need to take it lying down. Dr. Griffin offers up five things to know that could help you get a more restorative night’s sleep, free from low back pain.
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Can Pillows Help Train You To Be A Back Sleeper
Pillows can be a resourceful tool in training oneself to nap in a new way. A semi-flat and adjustable pillow under the neck should keep the head neutral without too much lift.
Make sure the pillow is not too flat, either. When a cushion is not high enough, it can put the neck at an awkward angle. Pillows under the arms can also offer support and make you feel cradled, and as mentioned earlier, placing a pillow under the knees should reduce pressure to help ensure a restful night.
View Our Guide:Best Pillows for Back Sleepers
Sit On A Chair That Pivots And Rolls
When sitting on a chair that pivots and rolls, you are highly advised to not twist your waist while sitting. Instead, always turn with your whole body.
Apart from the above tips, you are also encouraged to take regular breaks throughout the day. If you didnt know, when you are sitting down for extended periods, all the ligaments and muscles in your body tend to tense up! To release this tension, you must take scheduled regular breaks.
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Best Sleeping Positions For Neck Pain
The best sleeping positions for the neck are on your back or your side. The back in particular is recommended just make sure to use a pillow that supports the curvature of your neck and a flatter pillow to cushion your head.
If you sleep on your side, use a taller pillow under your neck so your neck aligns with your head. This will relieve any strain on your neck and keep your spine straight.
The trouble with sleeping on your stomach is that you have to twist your neck to keep your head on its side, which puts pressure on the nerves. You can try to retrain yourself to adopt another position, using pillows to coax yourself and to support you in a side or back-lying position. If you must sleep on your stomach, use a thin pillow or no pillow, trying to keep awkward angles at a minimum.
For all sleep positions with neck pain, you should use a pillow under your neck that provides support, such as a rolled towel or cervical pillow.
There is also such a thing as neck pain from sleeping wrong. Sometimes you wake up with neck pain. Sleeping at an awkward angle, sudden head or neck movements during sleep or neck strain from injury may cause neck pain. In addition to utilizing treatments to relieve this neck pain, make sure that future sleep includes a good pillow for neck support.
Get Out Of Bed Gently
Theres an art to getting out of bed that can help you avoid aggravating back pain. And keeping that pain at bay in the morning could lead to better sleep come bedtime.
Kirsch says: Be very careful when you are changing position do not twist or turn. Move your body together and keep your core tight. Roll on to your side and swing your legs over the side of the bed to sit up slowly and reduce the strain on your back.
Still feeling stiff? Your nighttime stretch routine can work for lower back pain in the a.m., as well.
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Sleep On The Front Of Your Body
Many doctors don’t recommend sleeping on the front of your body. But if you feel comfortable in this position, many of them will suggest you put a small pillow under your stomach and hips. This can improve the alignment of your spine. If you have degenerative disc disease or a herniated disc, sleeping on the front of your body with a pillow could be a great option.
What’s The Best Way To Get Rid Of Low Back Pain
Low back pain can affect your sleep as well as your daily routine, and disrupting or not having the ability to have quality sleep makes everything worse. Even though you can incorporate tips to ease your pain, having a solid solution is essential. The best way to get rid of lower back pain is by tackling the root cause of the pain. You can achieve long-term pain relief through using the Hip Hook, a tool that’s specifically designed to release tension in your iliopsoas muscles, which are often the main cause of lower back pain.
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Good Sleeping Positions For Back Pain
- Lying on the side but, with a pillow in between the knees, why? The pillow will keep the hips, pelvis, and spine in better alignment and in turn, alleviate pressure off the knee. Pay good attention to position of head and neck alignment in this position too.
KEY POINT only flex hips and knees slightly, as this position will ensure there is less pressure on the back.
- Sleeping on the back the key here is a small pillow under the knee which can reduce either knee or hip pain by decreasing the stress on the joint and in turn, the pressure on the back.
Pillow Recommendation for Neck Pain Relief and Neck AlignmentThe Original Groove® Pillow . This pillow will maintain and support the natural position of the neck as the head rests. I recommend this pillow to all my clients and I use it myself!
At Back To Health Wellness Our clients focus heavily on improving their neck and back position in order to manage the stresses placed on the body through the working environment and everyday life. This is done through flexibility stretches and strengthening exercises.
Book with us to learn more about how to manage back pain and improve posture permanently.