Sleeping & Back Pain Part II: Best Sleep Positions

Welcome back to our two-part series about pain-free sleep! Last month, we discussed the best kind of mattress for your back pain. You can check it out by CLICKING HERE. As always, if you have any questions about sleep, consult your primary care doctor.

If you are stiff and in pain when that alarm rings, you might wonder if you are sleeping wrong. A good, restful sleep is not just what happens in the bedroom. Feeling well-rested plays a significant role in your daily life. When you aren’t sleeping well, changing your position may help. Plus, experimenting with sleep position is an easy way to start.

Unfortunately, there is not a “one size fits all” universal approach for the best sleep position. When you are experimenting, take good notes on the way you sleep and how you felt throughout the day. See if a pattern emerges. You may wake up in a totally different position, and that’s okay! Most everyone will moves while sleeping. Even starting off in a certain position can improve your night’s sleep.

Here are some sleep positions:

  • Stomach: If you ask your friends and family how they sleep, many will report that they sleep on their stomach. Sadly, although the position is comfortable, the twist of the neck and spine might not be the best position for sleep. If you start out sleeping on your stomach and wake up with back pain, you may want to try another way. Experiment with pillows and blankets to find another way to feel just as comfortable.
  • Fetal: There is something reassuring about curling up in a ball. Maybe it is because it was your very first position in your mother’s womb! Out of all the options, fetal position is a favorite by many sleepers. If you love this position, the good news is that it is definitely not the worst for your position for your body. However, if you are waking up sore or sleepy, the fetal position might not be the best sleep position for you. Experiment with other positions to find that maximum level comfort while being unwound. Curling up might also restrict your breathing causing you to wake up groggy and not feeling fully rested.
  • Side Sleeping: If you like to sleep on your side, you are in luck. There are many benefits to side sleeping. Your partner will be happy about less snoring and it can also help combat acid reflux! But if it hurts, you may be sleeping in a way that isn’t the best for your hips and shoulders. Many people enjoy putting a pillow or two between their knees to take off some of the pressure on their lower back.
  • Flat: Flat on the back can cause snoring, but it is very easy on your spine and joints.If you don’t enjoy this position, why not put a pillow under your knees? This might help this position seem cozier.

Even with a new, improved sleep position, you may still continue to have a sore back. Together with your sleep diary, chiropractic care can help helps alleviate your back pain. Also, your chiropractor can help your sleep overall because of the improved blood flow. When you are in less pain, you won’t toss and turn as much looking for that comfortable position.  Dr. Darrell Beauvais is an experienced chiropractor, proudly serving Northwest Indiana. Call to Porter County Wellness and schedule an appointment today (219) 615-3178.

That wraps up our series, but we write a new blog every month. See you next time!