Tag Archives: sleeping tips

Is Back Pain Keeping You Up at Night?

Sleeping with back pain

When you have throbbing back pain, sleep may seem like an impossible feat. Aches and discomfort not only prevent you from falling asleep but they also make it difficult to stay asleep. If you are one to lose sleep due to pain, you are not alone. Two out of three people with chronic pain have trouble sleeping, according to the National Sleep Foundation.

While there is no universal sleep position to alleviate pain, there are a number of positions that can help you rest easy. A general rule to follow is to listen to what your body is telling you. Try out different positions until you find one that relieves the most pain.

Sleep Positions To Relieve Back Pain

  • Side Sleepers: Sleeping on your side allows your spine to elongate, which helps prevent back and neck pain. Placing a pillow between your knees, such as the ContourSleep Knee Spacer, will add additional spinal support. When your spine is in a natural, ergonomic position, tense muscles begin to relax, hip, leg, and joint pain is decreased, and circulation is improved throughout the night.
  • On Your Back: While this may not be the most popular sleep position, only 8% of people sleep on their backs, it is the healthiest option for most. Sleeping on your back allows your spine, head, and neck to rest in a neutral posture. If you are experiencing lower back pain, try a Bed Wedge System or an adjustable base. These will help maintain the natural curve of your lower back and provide great support while in bed, reading, or just relaxing. A small, rolled up towel placed under the small of your back will provide additional support.
  • On Your Stomach: This position can lead to pain throughout the night, as it is difficult to keep your spine in a neutral position. If you must sleep on your stomach, you can reduce strain on your back by placing a pillow under your lower abdomen and pelvis. As with any sleep position, be sure to choose a pillow that reduces strain on your back and neck.

A key element of a good night’s rest is a sleep environment that promotes comfort and relaxation. Be sure to visit your local Relax The Back store to speak with one of our trained specialists. They can help you find the perfect pillow and mattress for your specific needs.

Further Reading:

Nutrition & Sleep: Tips For a Good Night’s Rest

Sleep BetterAs a society, we are sleeping less. So, it should come as no surprise that lack of sleep is a common complaint among adults. While your sleep environment is a key component to a good night’s rest, how and what you eat also plays a big role in your quality and quantity of sleep.

Follow these tips to find out how you can eat to sleep better and be on a path to a more restful slumber:

  • Don’t skip, then splurge. Skipping meals changes your hormone levels and can throw off your body’s normal sleep pattern. Eating large, late dinners to make up for skipped meals only makes matters worse. Big meals increase blood flow to your digestive tract and stimulate your system instead of calming your body. Do your best to stick to your normal eating routine to avoid restless nights.
  • Strike the proper balance. Follow a well-rounded diet with foods high in calcium and B vitamins. These vitamins, along with magnesium, help to promote better sleep. Dairy and leafy greens are a great source of calcium, which help our bodies produce the “sleep hormone” melatonin. Vitamin B6 helps our body produce the “calming hormone” known as serotonin. This vitamin can be found in chickpeas, sunflower seeds, and wheat bread, to name a few.
  • Say no to after-dinner espressos. Caffeine can stay in your system for up to 12 hours, thus keeping you tossing and turning all night. Opt for decaf the next time someone offers you a cup of coffee after dinner.
  • Don’t be a party victim. Know what foods cause you indigestion and avoid them close to bedtime. Stay away from fatty and spicy foods as they can lead to acid reflux and indigestion. Also, keep alcoholic drinks to a minimum. Too much alcohol will disrupt your body’s natural rhythms and may keep you up all night.
  • Go herbal. Have a soothing cup of tea, such as chamomile, passionflower, or verbena, before bed. These teas act as a mild sedative, which help to calm and relax your body.