Back pain, especially in the lower region of your back, is the leading cause of disability. What is interesting about this pain is that it is not all caused by serious medical conditions, such as arthritis or cancer. This back pain is often brought on by bad posture, stress, or awkward sleep positions.
If you are one of the millions who suffer from back pain, you should try healthier sleep positions to relieve the pressure and pain from your back. Your back will feel better, and you will get a better night’s sleep.
Sleep in the Fetal Position
Sleeping in the fetal position works well to relieve pain from a herniated disc. When crawling into bed, you lay on your back and gently roll onto your side. Once on your side, you will tuck your knees toward your chest. This position will curl your torso towards your knees. At any time you wake up during the night, you should switch sides to maintain balance on your back.
Sleep positions where you curl up like a fetus will open the space between your vertebrae. The discs in your back are soft cushions located within your vertebrae and can become herniated when it is torn internally. This often leads to weakness in the legs/back and nerve pain. Sleeping in the fetal position will help alleviate some of the symptoms.
Sleep with a Pillow Under Your Knees While on Your Back
Sleep positions where you lay on your back are good for relieving lower back and hip pain. Lay flat and position a pillow under your knees, so your spine and pelvis is neutral in alignment. The pillow is going to help keep a curve in the lower region of your back. If you find this uncomfortable for your back, you can place a small towel under the small of your back to provide extra support. You may need an overstuffed pillow (such as a body pillow) which will also keep you on your back longer during the night.
Sleep positions on your back will evenly distribute your weight across the broadest part of your body. By distributing your weight, there is less strain on pressure points in your back. Placing a pillow under your knees will also give your spine better alignment, as well as your internal organs.
Sleep with a Pillow Between Your Knees While on Your Side
Sleep positions where you lay on your back are not comfortable for some people. If you are one of those who prefer to sleep on your side, put a pillow between knees to relieve back pain. While your shoulder makes contact with the mattress, as well as the rest of your body, put a pillow in between your knees. If you have a gap between your waist on the bed, you can use a small pillow to fill that space for added support.
Sleep positions that have you lay on your side without additional support will not improve back pain. It would be best if you had the pillow between your legs, so your pelvis, hips, knees, and spine are put into alignment.
DON’T Sleep on Your Stomach
There is almost no way to sleep on your stomach in a proper manner biomechanically with western beds. While many people feel this as the only comfortable way to sleep, chances are there are other factors that are making it feel like this. There are likely musculoskeletal injuries or dysfunction that needs to be addressed by you Chiropractor in you neck, back and/or pelvis.
Additionally, there may be other factors (sleep cycle, poor diet, smoking, supplemental needs, sleep apnea) that need to be addressed with your practitioner or with a medical doctor.
Bringing up your sleeping habits are very important in your treatment process. Small changes at home can help reduce pain and give you longer functionality between Chiropractic visits.