Sleep is one essential part of your life. It enables you to have a lot of energy throughout the day, allowing you to accomplish tasks and not feel fatigued at all times. Do you ever wonder why some people feel sleepy even if they sleep only for an hour? This happens because their body did not receive enough rest during the night, or they slept in an uncomfortable position which causes pain that prevents one from getting a good night's sleep.
Back pain is one of the most common health problems that people suffer from around the world nowadays, especially in developed countries like the United States or European Countries where people live more sedentary lives with less physical activity due to high technology and convenience. The characteristic symptoms include; stiffness, weakness, radiating pain etc., these symptoms may cause disability if they're not treated in time.
So what are the best sleeping tips that you should take into account? Read on!
It's the most important factor; if it's not supportive enough then there is no point in doing anything else. Start by identifying the problems that cause your back pain, whether it's lying on one side, or rolling from right to left etc., buy yourself a mattress that can support any movement during sleep without causing any strain to the body. You need to find a mattress that offers support to all parts of the body including the neck, shoulders and hips.
Consider the size of the mattress; it should be proportional to the size of the room or bed. Use a bed size chart as a guide. Bigger rooms mean you need a bigger mattress, 50 cm is recommended for single beds and 75cm is recommended for double beds.
The depth of the mattress matters; if your mattress isn't deep enough then you'll be able to feel the slats over which it's placed causing pain in certain parts of the body like your shoulders and hips where there are gaps between each slat/bar. It would be better to protect yourself from such risks by buying a thick mattress with 18 inches of thickness. Avoid bunk type mattresses with less than 12-inch depths that don't offer adequate support to the trunk and hip area during sleep.
Sleep On Your Side
It's not recommended to lay on your back while trying to get rid of upper body pain since it places excessive pressure on your spine causing increased stiffness especially in tender areas like the neck region which may result in headaches or migraines as already mentioned earlier. In addition to that, studies have also shown that sleeping on your side is better since there's less pressure in the hip, it keeps the body clean and cool during sleep.
Sleeping on your back may be uncomfortable since it reduces the space for your lungs to function properly creating a situation where you find yourself waking up in the middle of the night due to shortness of breath, while this won't happen if you sleep on your side; the safest position during sleep.
Also, change your sleeping position regularly. Most people have some favourite sleeping positions such as lying on stomach or lying on their sides; however, practising these poses every night can affect your back as well as joints because of muscle weaknesses that develop over time if you don't use other supporting muscles to take the weight off from your back.
Use pillows as neck support instead of headrests. When you are lying on your side and using most types of pillows, the focal point shifts from the shoulders to the neck/head; this creates tension and discomfort due to unstable posture while sleeping.
Put comforting pillows between knees while sleeping. If you lie on your sides while trying to get rid of lower body pain, you might feel uncomfortable due to pressure in the knee region. A simple way out is by placing pillows between your knees like shown in the picture above. It will keep the knees slightly apart and relieve any tension caused by pressure in this sensitive part of the body during sleep. Use a firm pillow because while contouring your head with a soft pillow may seem more comfortable, that's not advisable since it leads to neck pains when you lay down on one side for a long period of time or while rolling from left to right; which incidentally happens when you're asleep sometimes.
Stretch Before Bedtime
Stretching is important before going to bed because it will keep your joints and muscles flexible, this way they won't pull on each other causing pain. Some great stretching exercises to perform before going to bed include:
Stretch your arms straight to the sides and hold for a few seconds before lowering them back down to your chest. This will help keep your shoulder joints from pulling on each other while also working out any stiffness in the neck area which may lead to pain and discomfort.
Pelvic tilts are another great way to get rid of back, hips and lower body pain during sleep. Lay down on your back and pull your abdominal muscles up into your spine while tightening the gluteal muscles at the same time to get the best results from this easy exercise.
This will help strengthen your core muscles keeping you from experiencing pain in these areas during sleep; it also helps fight any kind of muscle imbalances that may lead to discomfort after long periods of standing or sitting.
Sleep With A Hot Water Bottle
Studies have shown that people who slept with a hot water bottle under their waist ended up experiencing less pain the next morning than those who used cold packs. Moreover, using such devices also helps in reducing inflammation as well as decrease the chances of getting injured by keeping the body warm throughout sleep. However, it's better to limit the usage of these bottles/packs to one hour only because continuous exposure to heat may result in overheating, which in turn may make you feel uncomfortable.
If you have a back condition and are having trouble sleeping, try these tips to help get rid of your pain. These simple changes may not sound like much at first glance but they can make the difference in whether or not you wake up feeling refreshed or exhausted from lack of sleep. Sleeping on your side with a pillow underneath your knees is one way to reduce pressure and improve circulation in the spine. When trying out new pillows or mattresses, make sure you stretch before bedtime so that any stiffness will be reduced when you're sleeping (and waking up); and for those who find themselves tossing and turning at night due to anxiety or stress, try using a hot water bottle as it helps relax tense muscles and releases tension from joints.