Rest On Your Side With A Pad Between Your Knees:
If resting on your back feels painful, try switching over to your side:
- Permit your left or right shoulder to touch the mattress, along with the rest of that side of your body.
- Place a pillow or pad between your knees.
- For more support, consider using a small pad or pillow if there is a gap between the mattress and your waist.
Whether you use one or two pillows, always try to resist the urge to sleep on the same side constantly. Doing so may give rise to severe issues like scoliosis and muscle imbalance.
What is the advantage of sleeping in this position?
Just sleeping on your side wont make you feel better but using the pad between your knees is the trick to make you feel better. The pad will keep your pelvis, hips, and spine in a better position.
Sleeping On Your Back With Shoulder Support
If you face rotator cuff painor shoulder pain, in generaltry sleeping on your back with a small pillow nested between your shoulder blades. Often, morning shoulder pain is caused by your bodys flatness during nighttime hours. You may still experience pain from resting on your back alone, so dont forget to enforce your shoulders natural bends by keeping the area between them raised.
Do You Have Neck Or Back Pain Your Sleep Style May Be Contributing
If youve ever woken up with a tingling arm or achy neck, youve experienced the negative effects of sleeping in the wrong position.
So which sleep positions should you embrace and which should you avoid? Heres a rundown, from best to worst.
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Do Find The Best Mattress And Pillows For Your Back
Much like sleeping positions, there is not one true type of mattress or pillow that will work for everyone with lower back pain. Some people have great results from a firmer mattress while others need something a little softer to alleviate pain. Research on firm versus soft mattresses is inconclusive, however, a middle-of-the road firmness seems to work best.
Now, we all know mattresses and high-quality pillows arent exactly cheap! So dont be afraid to experiment with different ones before making a purchase. The goal to to ensure theyll help alleviate your pain each night:
How long youve had your mattress? If its been over eight years, it might be time to do some mattress shopping. Although mattresses can last a while, their materials do break down over time and lose those qualities that help support a healthy sleep position.
Look for pillows that can support sleeping on the back and on the side . There are specialized pillows that are suitable for both positions. Remember that generally you need a thinner pillow when lying on the back, and thicker pillow when lying on the side.
Look for a foam or innerspring mattress. You can even double down and add a foam mattress topper onto your innerspring mattress.
Some manufacturers offer in-home trials for mattresses so you can try them out first.
Sleeping With A Flat Pillow
Speaking of pillows, you may be able to reduce neck and shoulder stress by lowering your heads elevation. If youre waking up with consistent pain in your upper back, neck, shoulders or collarbone area, try buying a flatter pillow. Or, buy an orthopedic pillow. Pillows with deeper depressions support the head better, and theyll increase neck support over several nightscomforting persistent pain while reducing more stress.
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But My Back Hurts After Sleeping And I Need Relief Right Now
Spending money on new bedding or changing the way you sleep arent quick or easy solutions. Heres a few things you can do for immediate pain reduction:
- Stretch your back muscles. Hamstrings, quads and hip flexors can shorten while sleeping. The simplest remedy for immediate back pain relief is good old-fashioned stretching. This WebMD video demonstrates five simple back pain stretches.
- Take a long hot bath. The warm water will help increase circulation and is often effective in providing relief to stiff muscles.
- No time for a bath? Use a warm compress instead. A warm damp towel can work as well or better than a hot bath. Beware, heat can make inflammation worse, so if your symptoms deteriorate, remove that heat immediately!
- Ice in short increments. It can work well for some, but cooling can aggravate some more serious issues, so if the pain worsens, remove the ice immediately.
- Have a partner massage the affected area. Who doesnt appreciate a good massage? Back pain or not, it generally makes life in the moment a little better.
- Pop a few of what modern medication has to offer. Aspirin, acetaminophen, or ibuprofen can help a lot if the pain isnt too ridiculous. It should go without saying, but please follow the directions on the packaging.
Sleeping With A Towel Beneath Your Neck
If you face morning neck pain, you should consider giving your head a little more support. Neck pain, primarily, is caused by the craniums weight during nighttime hours. By rolling up a small hand towel beneath your neck, however, you can additionally support your head and prevent hourly stress. Neck pillows, too, are a good choice if youre sleeping on your back. If, however, youre still experiencing pain, you should alter the pillow beneath your heador remove it.
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Maintain Elevation Of Your Lower Abdomen
With sleep support, this is effortless. All you need to do is get a rest aid for your lower back, as it helps keep your middle back free from pain.
When youve been experiencing such pain for a while, itll be better to add sleep support to your knees. Keeping your knees a bit high-up releases pressure from your back, keeping pain at bay.
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.
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On The Front With A Pillow Under The Stomach
This is generally considered the least healthy sleeping position but for people who struggle to sleep any other way, placing a slim pillow beneath the stomach and hips can help improve spinal alignment.
Also, sleeping on the front may actually benefit anyone with a herniated disk or degenerative disk disease.
To get comfortable in this position:
What Causes Middle Back Pain While Sleeping
The root factor for the middle back pain is the spine positioning and unnecessary pressure on the spine during flat and curve positioning in the sleeping. Worst sleeping positions can cause extra pressure on the spine that leads to different types of back pain these are lower, middle, and upper back pain. Extraordinary curve position is the worst positioning of sleeping that causes upper and lowers back pain.
Another source of pain in the middle back is sleeping on your stomach and abdomen. Some people do not care about getting up from the bed that can pressurize spine too much and the result came out with severe back pain.
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Keeping The Hips Stacked While Sleeping On The Sides
Lying on the side is the most common sleeping position but it can often pull the spine out of its position causing strain on the lower back. For side sleepers, placing a flat, firm pillow between the knees can prove to be effective. The pillow will help to align the hips with your lower spine and prevent the leg on the top to exert pressure on your pelvis or lower back. The support also helps in creating room for the spinal nerves and relieves stress from the lower spine. Also, make sure to use a head pillow to align your head with the shoulders.
To adopt this side sleeping position:
- After lying on your bed, slowly roll on to your preferred side.
- Place a pillow to support the neck and head.
- Slightly pull up the knees and place a pillow between them.
- For added support, you can place more pillows at the waist to fill any gap between the mattress and the body.
How To Prevent Back Pain In Bed
6 min read
Back pain can keep you up at night, it prevents you from enjoying a good nights sleep and saps your days energy. But youre in luck, not only are there solutions, but weve spoken to Hashim Saifuddin, Director and Osteopath at Atlas Osteopathy, to get the best and most thorough information to help you on your way to understanding back pain in bed, and how to combat it.
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The Worst Sleep Position: On Your Stomach
Sleeping on your stomach is the worst position for your spine, according to Raymond J. Hah, MD, a spine surgeon at Keck Medicine of USC and assistant professor of clinical orthopedic surgery at the Keck School of Medicine of USC. This position puts the most pressure on your spines muscles and joints because it flattens the natural curve of your spine, he says. Sleeping on your stomach also forces you to turn your neck, which can cause neck and upper back pain.
Research shows that theres a correlation between pain and sleep, so it makes sense to incorporate simple changes in your sleep style that alleviate back pain and less pain means better sleep.
Application Of Pain Relief Cream
There are a wide variety of over-the-counter pain relief medications you can use to treat upper back and neck pain after sleeping. Pain relief creams that contain capsaicin are known to be quite efficient in treating night pain caused by osteoarthritis, degenerative disc disease, and rotator cuff tendinitis. Creams that contain menthol can also temporarily numb the pain and stiffness caused by sleeping in the wrong sleep position. However, using too much menthol cream may also cause you to be more sensitive to pain at night, so moderate use is advised.
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On The Side With Legs Straight
Sleeping on the side is another common sleeping position thats helpful for people with sleep apnea. Its the ideal sleeping posture for snorers too because it helps keep the airways open. But if you want to maximize comfort when sleeping on the side with the legs straight, always remember to keep the hips stacked.
Place a firm pillow between the knees to align the lower spine with the hips. This also prevents the leg on top from applying excess pressure on the lower back and pelvis. Its also recommended to use a head pillow to raise the head and align it with the spine. A waist pillow or lumbar support cushion also helps maintain the alignment between the lower and upper back for better support.
Side sleepers are often advised to sleep on their left side to avoid acid reflux, but make sure to change sides now and then to avoid muscle strain on one side of the body. Sleeping on one side all the time causes many issues like scoliosis and muscle imbalance.
Change Up Your Sleep Position Or Mattress
Switching to a more supportive sleep position can reduce lower back pain. Also consider how you can use pillows or invest in a new mattress to support better spinal alignment and relieve lower back pain.
Research suggests medium firm mattresses are the best mattresses for back pain. In one study of people with low back pain, those who slept on medium firm mattresses reported lower pain scores both during sleep and upon getting up in the morning.
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Sleeping On Your Stomach
More and more pain-ridden individuals are sleeping on their stomachs to reduce morning back pain. Understandably, youll reduce pressure on your back by not sleeping on it at all. Place a pillow under your lower abdomen and pelvis, and add another beneath your head if youre still experiencing strain. Youll be surprised by the morning results.
Tips For Best Sleeping Positions For Middle Back Pain:
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How Sleep Can Contribute To Back Pain
Although there are many potential sources of lower back pain, how youre sleeping can be a factor. When youre sleep-deprived, your tolerance for pain is lower than it would be if you slept well. Studies have shown that losing sleep can heighten sensitivity to painful stimuli. In theory, sleep loss increases painful inflammation and getting enough sleep may reduce inflammation.
Another factor that can increase back pain is your response to pain medication when youre sleep-deprived. In a study of healthy normal adults, the analgesic effects of codeine are diminished in sleep-deprived individuals versus non-sleepy individuals. Sleeping well may help your pain medications work better.
How Sleep Position Affects Your Spine
When you think of poor posture leading to orthopedic issues like lower back pain or neck pain, standing posture or sitting position probably come to mind. But theres a third type of posture you may be forgetting, and it affects your health just as much as standing and sitting its your sleeping position.
Your bodys posture during sleep can have a negative effect on your spinal column and other body parts, too
Minus a few tosses and turns in the night, the posture we hold during sleep is sustained for several hours at a time. If something in the body is crooked, twisted, pinned under another body part, or held at a strange angle, it can stay that way for far, far longer than it would when youre awake.
As you probably know from experience, the result of an awkward sleeping posture can be painful the next day, ranging from the pins and needles of an ‘asleep’ limb to the torture of a middle-of-the-night leg cramp.
And then theres your spine your back and neck.
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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:
Types Of Lower Back Pain
There are two primary types of lower back pain: acute and chronic.
- Acute lower back pain is short-term, lasting for just a few days up to a few weeks. It is often connected to an identifiable event or injury. When acute back pain fades, there is no ongoing effect on mobility.
- Chronic lower back pain goes on for three months or longer. In many cases, it occurs without a clear link to an initial injury.
Lower back pain that starts as acute may become chronic. It is estimated that around 20% of cases of acute low back pain persist and become chronic.
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Your Mattress And Back Pain
When it comes to picking the right mattress, it is important to get the correct support for your spine. A mattress that is too hard can put too much pressure on the areas where you feel discomfort, whereas a mattress that is too soft will not provide support for the areas that need it, allowing the spine to spend long periods in poor and unhealthy positions.
People who suffer from lower back pain generally benefit more from a mattress erring on the firmer side of neutral. This is because of the shape of the spine, meaning that the lower back is often in need of more support. Most people cant go wrong with a memory foam-type mattress, as this will provide support where support is needed, and allow for adjustment to the body where that is also required.
It is always a good idea to test any potential mattress first to check it supports you in the right way, the best way is to pop into one of our stores and try a bed. You may also like to see our Guide on Picking the Best Mattress for Your Sleeping Position.