Some Common Reasons For Morning Lower Back Pain
Sometimes the causes for your morning lower back pain may be so simple you did not even think of them. The most obvious would be the quality of your mattress. If your mattress is more than 10 years old, lumpy and bumpy, you may be receiving no support. If your back is not supported while you sleep, the strain on your lower back magnifies. Your lumbar region carries the majority of that pressure during the day and if it does not have an opportunity for rest that pain will also magnify.
Home Remedies For Neck Pain
If you wake up with a sore neck, there are several remedies you can try to help ease the pain. You likely dont need to see a doctor, especially if you dont have any other symptoms, and you havent had a sore neck for long. Here are some self-care options you can try:
- Apply ice or a cold pack to the sore part of your neck for 20 minutes at a time. This can help reduce inflammation in your neck muscles.
- If youve had pain for a day or more, apply a heat pack to the sore area for 20 minutes at a time. This can help to soothe and relax the muscles.
- Try over-the-counter painkillers, such as ibuprofen , naproxen , or acetaminophen .
- Do some gentle exercises, like walking or yoga. This can help keep the blood flowing to your neck. Dont stop moving altogether. Not moving can cause your muscles to tighten up.
To help prevent neck pain when you wake up, there are steps you can take to support your neck and reduce the strain on your neck muscles.
A couple of simple exercises can help keep your neck muscles strong and limber, which may reduce the risk of waking up with pain in your neck.
Whats An Autoimmune Disease
In autoimmune disorders, the body begins to attack itself as the immune system mistakenly identifies healthy cells as dangerous or harmful bacteria or viruses. In response, your body makes autoantibodies that destroy healthy cells. The attack causes damage to tissues and often inflammation at the affected site.
Fibromyalgia doesnt qualify as an autoimmune disorder because it doesnt cause inflammation. There also isnt any sufficient evidence indicating fibromyalgia causes damage to bodily tissues.
Fibromyalgia is difficult to diagnose because its symptoms are similar or associated with other conditions, including some autoimmune disorders. In many cases, fibromyalgia can occur simultaneously with autoimmune disorders.
Common conditions associated with fibromyalgia pain include:
Some autoimmune disorders and fibromyalgia have similar symptoms and characteristics. Its not uncommon to have fibromyalgia pain and an autoimmune disease at the same time. This can make it confusing when considering if fibromyalgia is an autoimmune disease.
A suggested that there are high levels of thyroid antibodies in patients with fibromyalgia. However, the presence of thyroid antibodies isnt uncommon and may sometimes exhibit no symptoms.
A 2013 study linked pain caused by fibromyalgia to small nerve fiber neuropathy. However, this association isnt yet widely accepted.
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Still In Pain Consider Seeing A Doctor
If you routinely wake up with extreme morning back pain, or your pain hasnt responded to self-care measures such as stretches and a new mattress, it might be time to consider more immediate relief. Ask your doctor if you can take non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , such as ibuprofen. Acetaminophen may be another option for occasional back pain if you cant take NSAIDs.
If over-the-counter medications dont help, your doctor will probably send you for imaging and diagnosis to determine the root cause of your morning back pain and suggest a course of pain management therapy to relieve your immediate pain. Your doctor might also suggest exercise therapy to help correct the underlying skeletal or muscular problems that led to your pain.
Waking Up With Neck Pain: Causes And Treatment
Ever woken up with a literal pain in the neck? Chances are the answer is yes.
A whopping one in five adults has experienced neck discomfort within the last three months, statistics show. And often, the problem is the worst at night. Sleeping in a suboptimal position, using a worn out pillow, or even laying on an unsupportive mattress can all go a long way towards creating a literal pain in your neck.
The good news is that there are plenty of steps you can take to find relief and sleep more soundly. Heres a look at why your neck might be sore or stiff at night or when you wake up in the morning, plus ways to have a good nights rest.
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Tip #: Check Your Bed Set
Next, make sure youre equipped with the proper sleeping supplies. For example, its difficult to find a pillow that properly supports your neck. Most feather pillows dont provide adequate neck support, which can cause neck soreness even if you are sleeping in the recommended side and back positions.
If you find yourself awaking with neck pain or headaches despite sleeping on your back or side, it is likely that you need a cervical pillow. A cervical pillow is specifically designed to support the natural curves of your neck while you sleep and places your neck in its desired, natural position. Cervical pillows are designed for side and back sleepers, but make it difficult to sleep on your stomach, which is an added perk to using it.
It is also important to make sure youre using the . There is a link between the type of mattress people use and associated back pain. People who use a medium-firm mattress have less back pain compared to people who use mattresses classified as too firm or too soft.
In addition, research indicates that you should purchase a new mattress every 10 years if you want to ensure your mattress isnt the cause of your back pain. Mattresses that are 10 years old and beyond are shown to be a possible cause of back pain while you sleep.
What Causes Upper Back Pain
Upper back pain before and after sleeping can be brought on by several factors, including poor posture, overuse injuries, excess sitting and hunching if you work in an office, sports injuries, and muscle strains. Other factors like being overweight, smoking, and even heavy backpacks and purses frequently create upper back pain problems. One often overlooked cause is sleeping position.
Bill Fish, certified sleep science specialist and co-owner of Tuck Sleep, points out, There is no question that your preferred sleeping position could result in some back pain. According to Fish, 41 percent of people sleep in the fetal position. Its also the most popular sleeping position and helps keep your spine aligned at night. With the proper mattress and pillow support for your neck, shoulders, and hips, sleeping on your back will also relieve any pressure on the spine.
If you are sleeping on your stomach and notice you are suffering some back pain, there probably is a reason, Fish says, It knocks your spine completely out of alignment. He points out that the upper back pain comes from your bodys weight pushing the core into the sleep surface and misaligning the spine.
Much like when recovering from back surgery, it is important to adjust your sleeping positions to minimize discomfort overnight for your upper back pain.
A simple change to help stop upper back pain before and after sleep includes standing often and moving periodically.
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What To Do To Reduce Back Pain So You Can Fall To Sleep
A good starting point is to try and establish a nightly routine around 30-60 minutes before the time you want to fall to sleep.
This could include drinking warm tea, reading, knitting, listening to soothing music or meditating.
You could also take a warm shower or bath, apply gel heat pads, or do some light stretching exercises to loosen your muscles which can reduce back pain.
About Orthopaedic & Spine Center Of The Rockies
The physicians and staff of the Orthopaedic & Spine Center of the Rockies have taken great pleasure in serving the people of northern Colorado, Wyoming, and Nebraska since our founding in 1969.
Our orthopaedic surgeons have advanced training or board certification in surgery of the back and neck, hand and upper extremity , hip, knee, shoulder, foot and ankle, orthopaedic trauma, and joint replacements.
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What To Do If Youre Waking Up With Back Pain
Back pain is a common complaint for adults. About 80 percent of adults will experience lower back pain at some point in their life. More than a quarter of adults report experiencing low back pain within the last three months. Low back pain is the most common cause of job-related disability and a major contributor to missed workdays.
If youre waking up with back pain, chances are youre not getting the restorative sleep you need at night. Common causes of back pain include getting into an accident and lifting something heavy. Sometimes back pain can develop over time with age. A sedentary lifestyle can lead to low back pain, especially if you have a burst of activity your body isnt prepared for.
Most low back pain is short-term, lasting just a few days to a few weeks. Often, it resolves on its own or with a treatment of the underlying cause. However, chronic back pain persists for 12 weeks or longer. Sometimes, a medical or surgical procedure can relieve the pain, but sometimes, pain persists despite treatment.
Muscle Imbalances And Guarding
The underlying causes that I indicated above can cause you to have muscle imbalances and guarding. As harmless as these two terms may seem, they are a BIG factor of what is always hurting you. They can even add or worsen some of the very same causes above.
Why its an important factor for you to understand and correct
You cant feel a muscle imbalance. Only when the imbalance hurts you.
Its like a back spasm. The spasm is actually a muscle imbalance that feels very painful, but its trying to protect something else that may be from another muscle imbalance you cant feel.
The most common form of morning stiffness and pain is due to muscle imbalances and poor conditioning of the muscles themselves. These problems may then lead to disc, vertebrae and joint issues which will hurt even more. A lumbar muscle imbalance area will cause a disc problem which then may put pressure on a nerve. To prevent further injury in that area, the muscles of the lower back will stiffen, tighten or spasm.
This common reaction is known as muscle guarding. Here, the muscle spasms and becomes painfully rigid to prevent any further motion. This happens to protect either a nerve, disc or a possible muscle strain or sprain.
Spasms and guards rarely resolve entirely without adequate treatment so you end up locked and twisted.
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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.
How To Stop Waking Up In Pain
Over the weekend, I had a friend text me that she woke up with low back pain and could barely move without pain. She was worried and panicking because she was afraid that she would have to take the day off of work on Monday because of the pain, which she couldnt afford to do. I also hear patients frequently come in and tell me that their goal is to get rid of nagging neck pain or waking up with a creak in their neck.
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Inflammation Sleep Stress And Pain
The link between sleep and pain is based on some superficially simple inflammatory biology: bad sleep is inflammatory and inflammation makes it harder to sleep, which is not widely appreciated. That means that sleeping badly can actually make it harder to sleep well! This is a vicious cycle every extremely frustrated insomniac is familiar with: being exhausted from a sleepless is not a guarantee that you will sleep well the next night.
And that vicious cycle is relevant to night and morning pain, which is known to be significantly mediated by the immune system signalling molecule interleukin-6. IL-6 and inflammation are almost synonymous more of one means more of the other. Everyone knows that stress makes it harder to sleep, but how? Its not just because your mind is racing its because stress makes us produce IL-6, which is inflammatory, and inflammation in turn makes it harder to sleep! And then the bad sleep also makes us pump more IL-6
And thats why its important to get your sleep!
Why Your Mattress Is Important For Back Pain
You may have the wrong mattress if you are experiencing back pain every morning. Your bed may not be the problem, but a good mattress can alleviate back pain.
Your spine will be aligned if you have a good mattress thats well-suited to your needs. This alignment can help to relieve aches and discomforts. For those with lower back pain, a mattress should not put pressure on the sacrum and shoulders. The right mattresses are firm enough to ensure your shoulders dont sink but soft enough for you to feel comfortable. On the mattress firmness scale, aim for a rating of 5-7 .
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Place A Pillow Under Your Knees
Sometimes, sleeping on your back with your hands at your sides isnt enough. In order to give your lower back a little help, try placing a small pillow under your knees.
This tip will help your body keep a healthy curve along the lower back.
If you dont have an extra pillow, you can also use a rolled-up towel against the small of your back. Either way, youre providing your back with the extra support it needs.
You’re Not Drinking Enough Water
This leads me to my first point: not drinking enough water is the most obvious cause of dehydration and, thus, painful kidneys. If were getting the full 8 hours of sleep every night, obviously our bodies will become dehydrated. This long interval between drinking might be even longer if you avoid drinking too close to bedtime because you worry about needing the loo during the night.
So, its important to rehydrate your body as soon as you wake up in the morning. However, water isnt usually the first thing on our minds when we wake up on a dark Monday morning with a full week of work ahead. A strong coffee or tea is usually our first point of call! This means that your kidneys could be suffering for a long time if you dont think about drinking water until later on in the morning, or even lunch time.
Your lower back pain might be bad enough on an average weekday morning, but a long lie on the weekend can exacerbate the issue even more, as your body is waiting even longer for that precious liquid. Plus, alcohol consumed the night before wont help matters, as this will increase the rate at which you pee while drinking, and can leave you even more dehydrated the next morning.
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When You Are Stressed And Panicking Your Heart Rate Goes Up You Start Breathing Faster And Shallower And Your Body Releases Cortisol Also Known As The Stress Hormone
When your body has a lot of cortisol, it can make the pain signal more intense, or cause less movement to give you the pain signal. This is why it is important to decrease stress by telling yourself that the pain is like a check engine light and take some deep breaths. It can also be helpful to stimulate the release of endorphins, which can help alleviate pain. This is why our motto is just keep moving. One of the worst things that you can do for pain is to freeze and not move or stay in bed all day. Movement is medicine, even gentle movement. One movement that many of our patients find beneficial is walking, even just getting your heart rate up a little can release endorphins and help decrease pain and improve your mood. If your pain happens when you bear weight, like you do while walking or running, biking and swimming can also be helpful.
To Correct These Problems Ask Yourself:
Why is it better towards the end of the day and then only worse later in the morning?
If it gets better later in the day, shouldnt the problem be getting better also?
If I am resting the whole night, why would I hurt from it?
If I didnt do anything to my back, why would it hurt?
I have tried everything possible, but the pain keeps returning, isnt this a permanent problem?
Is it really the bed that is the problem and not my body at all?
I dont believe that exercise would help at all. I have tried it. It has the same effect. I still feel sore. Isnt this true?
Isnt it true that: Most people have low back problems anyway? Isnt it just a part of life? Isnt bed rest the best management?
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