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How To Sleep To Avoid Back Pain

Ideal Lying Position For Sleep

How To Sleep To Avoid Back And Neck Pain

We spend almost a third of our lives asleep. The quality of our sleep seriously affects our health. So how important is the way we sleep? What is the correct and ideal sleeping position in sleep? Is there a relationship between sleeping position and low back, back, neck pain , snoring, psychology and sleep quality?

The ideal sleeping position may seem like a simple matter at first glance. After all, how many positions are we talking about? Prone, side-lying, supine Else? In fact, there are many different sleeping styles that people prefer. You can see various examples in the picture below. How do you prefer to sleep?

There is information that various inferences can be made about the person, especially the character analysis, from the way of sleeping. In our article, we will discuss the relationship between sleeping positions and spinal health . By paying attention to the ideal sleeping position during sleep, it helps to prevent back and neck pain .

Take Care When You Sleep

Dr. Bang says if your neck is bothering you, you also should pay attention to your sleep positions. Sleep only on your side or on your back never on your stomach, he says.

When you sleep on your stomach, often you will end up twisting your head one way or the other for hours at a time, Dr. Bang says. Sleeping on your stomach also can affect your low back because your belly sinks in to the bed if you dont have enough support.

For minor, common causes of neck pain, try these simple remedies:

  • Apply heat or ice to the painful area. Use ice for the first 48 to 72 hours, then use heat after that. Heat may be applied with warm showers, hot compresses or a heating pad. Be sure not to fall asleep with a heating pad or ice bag in place to avoid skin injuries.
  • Take over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen.
  • Keep moving, but avoid jerking or painful activities. This helps calm your symptoms and reduce inflammation.
  • Do slow range-of-motion exercises, up and down, side to side, and from ear to ear. This helps to gently stretch the neck muscles.
  • Have a partner gently massage the sore or painful areas.
  • Try sleeping on a firm mattress without a pillow or with a special neck pillow.
  • Ask your health care provider about using a soft neck collar to relieve discomfort. Dont use the collar for a long time. Doing so can make your neck muscles weaker.

If the pain gets in the way of your daily activities, Dr. Bang says to call your doctor.

Tips To Sleep Right To Avoid Back Pain

If you thought good posture was limited to holding yourself upright while standing or finding the correct way to sit at your desk at work, think again! Sleeping in an odd position can leave you with back pain that hampers your daily life. Luckily for you, if you havent faced a problem yet, you are likely doing okay with your sleep posture. But if you do have the makings of a spine problem or backache every now and again, it wont hurt to check what position is best for your back when you catch some shut-eye.

Sleep is meant to help relax you. Not finding the right position or environment to sleep in can really mess with your spine and neck, leaving you in terrible pain. If youd rather not join the 31 million Americans who complain of lower back pain, it may be time to pay attention to how you are sleeping. The majority of the back problems people face have mechanical origins and arent linked to illnesses like inflammatory arthritis. Considering you could spend as much as a third of your day sleeping, theres potential for doing more to care for your spine when you lie down.1

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Positions For Side Sleepers

Sleeping on your side places your spine out of alignment. Your top knee will pull down on your back and can cause pain. If youre a side sleeper, youll want to make sure that your hips and waist are properly aligned.

4. Using a pillow between your knees

  • While laying on your side slightly pull your knees towards your head.
  • Gently, place a pillow in between your knees.
  • Ensure your head is properly supported with a pillow.
  • While your standard bed pillows will work well, a knee pillow is specifically designed to contour and fit comfortably between your top and bottom leg keeping your spine properly aligned by raising your hips and knees.

    5. Placing support under the hollow of your waist

  • Lay on your side with your head comfortably supported.
  • Guide a small pillow under your waist, positioning it under the space between you and the bed.
  • Adjust until you are feeling your waist adequately supported without additional pressure on your hips or rib cage.
  • Some side sleepers may find that rolling up a small towel or using a small foam pillow placed under their waist adds the necessary support to their spine. The extra support lifts your waist just enough to keep your lower back and spine in line without causing extra stress.

    6. In the fetal position

  • Lay on your side with your head supported with a pillow.
  • Bring your knees up towards your chest.
  • Slightly bring your shoulders down to your knees.
  • Add a pillow in between your knees for additional support and added alignment.
  • Sleeping Posture Matters Follow These Dos And Donts To Relieve Back Neck Pain

    Best Sleeping Positions To Avoid Back Pain

    How many times have you woken up with neck or back pain? Maybe the pain is disturbing your sleep even at night? Trying to figure out what the back and neck pain is all about? Well, it is the most common pain that people suffer from. One of the leading causes behind it is your sleeping position!

    Yes, that’s true! Most of us don’t think twice about the way we sleepwe just get into bed and find a position that is comfortable. However, sleeping on your side, back or stomach all the positions greatly influence your health. Not only this, your sleeping position also plays a key role in snoring, acid reflux, heartburn, sleep apnea and even wrinkles.

    There are some sleeping positions that place extra pressure on your neck, shoulder, hips and lower backall of which can lead to an aching back and neck.

    Dr Ashwin Borkar, Consultant Neurosurgeon, Wockhardt Hospital, Mira Road, Mumbai, says, “The way you sleep is associated with back and neck pain. And yes, certain sleep positions can aggravate pain and make your life miserable. While some may help to get rid of it.”

    Let’s find out which sleeping position you should avoid if you are suffering from back and neck pain and which sleeping position you should follow.

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    Sleep Time And Back Health

    In a 2010 study by Auvinen et al looking at insufficient sleep and prevalence of low back pain in adolescents, there were significant connections to lack of sleep and low back pain in both boys and girls. Following up with these teenagers two years after the study began insufficient sleep over that time period was predictive of the neck and low back pain .

    Starting as basic as how long you sleep may have an impact in lowering your risk for neck and back pain as you age.

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    Sleeping well will encourage pain relief for various reasons but one of the biggest ones is hormone release, specifically growth hormone, to help repair muscles while you sleep. If you do not sleep long enough you are unable to experience REM sleep and hormone release.

    The nervous system needs a break to decompress and help your body recover. With disrupted or short sleeping hours the odds are not in your favor for a quick recovery from back pain. There are a lot of benefits from using a smart bed as well, so check that article out if youre interested in trying one.

    This makes sense as sleep is such a large part of our lives and also something many people, nearly 35% of adults today as mentioned previously, struggle to achieve optimum sleep. If there is one thing that you can do to improve your back health, let alone your overall health, focusing on your quality and length of sleep would be one of them.

    One: Consider A New Mattress

    The National Sleep Foundation reports that the average person spends around 3,000 hours sleeping on their mattress. Charla Fischer, MD, Spine Surgeon at the NYU Langone Spine Center, points out that even if your back pain isnt caused by a worn-out mattress or poor sleep, it can still be magnified by them.

    She says, If someone has back pain due to back muscle weakness, poor work ergonomics, or spine problems such as a disc herniation or stenosis, a poor mattress or low-quality sleep can aggravate the pain.

    If you wake up more than two times a week feeling stiff and sore your body may be telling you its time for a new bed. “To be fair, I would also state that we generally do not need to stay on the same surface for longer than six to seven years,” says Dr. Breus Either way a new bed may help.

    Even though purchasing a mattress is ultimately a personal decision , there are some features you can look for.

    Dr. Fischer stresses that its key to try it out in person and follow the manufacturers guidelines. After that, you can be on the lookout for these main features, which Dr. Breus recommends:

    • A medium-firm mattress thats not too firm or soft
    • Memory foam, which better supports the body
    • Latex, a material that contours to the body
    • An adjustable mattress that relieves pressure and allows you to sleep in most any position that helps your back pain

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    Side Sleeping And Shoulder Pain Or Neck Pain

    Many of my clients are side sleepers but they need some coaching on side sleeping and shoulder pain. The tips below also apply if you have neck pain and side sleep.

    • The key elements to a comfortable side sleeping position is supporting your entire body in a side-lying position.
    • You want to ensure that your pillow fills in the space between your shoulders and your neck and that its not sitting under the shoulder. It should support you at the neck.
    • You could also use a rolled towel in your pillow case to support your cervical spine for support.
    • The pillow that works for me tends to be a feather pillow, but thats not the case for everybody, especially if youre allergic to feathers.
    • The little belt that Ive created provides me with support between my pelvis and my lower rib cage.
    • I suggest that you put a pillow between the knees and ankles to create a supported position for your pelvis.
    • Your spine is now supported at the small of the waist and your spine is totally straight.
    • A point that I forgot to mention in the video, is to align your shoulder directly beneath your torso.
    • Avoid letting your shoulder roll forward.
    • There are more tips below for shoulder pain sufferers.

    How To Sleep With Back Pain: 5 Tips For Relief

    Sleep posture to avoid back pain

    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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    The Next Best Option: On Your Side With Legs Straight

    For those who snore or have sleep apneaor if you simply find sleeping on your back uncomfortableside sleeping with your torso and legs straight is a great alternative. This is the ideal sleeping pose for snorers and people with sleep apnea because it keeps your airways open. Adding a small pillow between your legs will also help keep your spine neutral.

    Whether You Have Back Neck Or Pregnancy Pain Your Sleep Posture Makes A Big Difference In How You Feel Each Morning

    Good posture is a key to a healthy spine, but posture isnt just about sitting or standing straight. Your sleep posture also has a major impact on your back and neck. While some positions help you feel refreshed come morning, others can leave you stiff, sore, and in pain.

    When it comes to finding the best sleeping pose for your back and neck, think neutral. Positions that put your spine in a neutral, or straight, alignment put the least amount of stress on your back and neck. Learn which positions put your spine in a neutral state and those that should be avoided below.While some positions help you feel refreshed come morning, others can leave you stiff, sore, and in pain. Photo Source: LifetimeStock.

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    Find The Right Position

    Certain sleeping positions can help ease your back pain, so find one that is most comfortable for you. Try sleeping with a pillow between or underneath your legs for extra support.

    If you sleep on your side, put the pillow between your knees and draw them up slightly toward your chest. If you like to sleep on your back, try the pillow under your knees, or roll up a small towel and place it under the small of your back.

    Avoid sleeping on your stomach because it puts a lot of strain on your back. If itâs the only position you can fall asleep in, put a pillow under your stomach to take some of the pressure off your back. Or, to break the habit, wear a sleep shirt with a pocket in front and put a tennis ball in it.

    Two Reasons For Torticollis

    Theme Options

    So now we know the what of neck pain from sleeping. What about the how?

    Generally when you wake up with neck pain, there are one or two issues at play here. Either your pillow isnt right for you, the position in which you sleep is aggravating your neck, or both.

    You might think that a hard pillow can hurt your neck, but its usually a pillow thats too soft that makes you wake up with neck pain. Just like you need to keep your cervical spine aligned during the day to avoid overly taxing your muscles and ligaments, you need to do the same at night. Its harder, though you can make a conscious effort in daylight, but how can you control your posture when youre asleep?

    Your pillow is the answer. A nice, firm pillow will keep your spine in a straight line from your atlas down to your coccyx . Any deviation from straight runs the risk of torticollis, so avoid it by making sure your pillow is right.

    Your pillow or your sleeping position could be the culprit.

    The way you sleep can also have a profound effect on the way you wake upready to face the day or ready to crawl back under the covers and hide from your neck pain. The best sleeping position for neck pain is usually on the back.

    Back sleeping may not be right for youit can aggravate sleep apnea, for example. In that case, sleeping on your side is the next best thing. Try to avoid stomach sleeping it can put pressure on nerves that start in your neck, leading to further neck pain or radiculopathy .

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    Sleeping On The Front With Pillow Under The Stomach

    Lying on the front of the body is usually considered the worst sleeping posture. However, for those who struggle to sleep in another position, placing a slim pillow underneath the stomach and hips can help improve spinal alignment.

    Sleeping on the front may also benefit people with a herniated disc or a degenerative disc disease.

    To adopt this sleeping position, a person should:

  • Get into bed and roll on to their front.
  • Place a slim pillow underneath the abdomen and hips to raise the mid-p.
  • Use a flat pillow for the head or consider sleeping without one.
  • Caution While Lying Down And Getting Up

    Going to bed and getting out of bed can become a difficult situation on its own in low back pain, lumbar hernia. Bending your back forward, making sudden turns or stretching movements can aggravate your pain. Therefore, avoid hasty movements. For example, to get out of bed

    Bend your knees first. Then roll to one side of you. Lift your torso up using your arms while hanging your legs off the bed. Then lower your feet over the edge of the bed and stand up slowly. Do the same movements in reverse while lying on the bed.

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    Try Adding Some Accessories

    When it comes to sleep, your biggest accessory is the mattress you spend eight hours each night on. And like a best friend or significant other, you want your mattress to be supportive.

    Generally, a firm mattress is better, Pham says. It comes down to it not collapsing in, no matter how your body mass is distributed. Soft mattresses may feel like a bed of clouds at first, but in the long-term, they have the potential to cause more aches and pains because they fold more easily under your center of mass.

    Coming in close second to your mattress are pillows, and theres a variety of ways to use them to relieve back and neck pain.

    Phams top suggestion is getting yourself a cervical rollyou know, those special neck alignment pillows youve definitely seen in an infomercial. But put your credit card down, because you can make your own by simply rolling up a towel if you dont want to spend money.

    If you sleep on your side or back and have neck pain, youll want to place the cervical roll under the bottom half of your neck for more support. You can use it with your regular pillow, and Phams pro tip is putting the rolled up towel right into your pillowcase.

    If your back is killing you but you cant help but sleep on it, Pham suggests adding pillows under your lower back and under your knees. Those with back pain who sleep on their stomachs can try adding a pillow beneath their hips to alleviate some pressure.

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