Best Sleeping Positions For Back Shoulder And Neck Pain
If you have back pain, sleeping on your stomach or back may aggravate your pain. Switch to side sleeping to minimize your risk of back pain.
For further relief, put a pillow between your knees to keep your hips in alignment. If you must sleep on your back, placing a pillow under your knees will take some strain off of your back.
Shoulder, Neck, and Upper Back Pain
Arthritis and other painful conditions along your upper spine can worsen or improve while you sleep. Studies seem to disagree, though, on what positions are ideal.
One large study found that people had less shoulder pain who slept in the starfish positionon their backs, with hands up near their chest or head. But it couldn’t explain if those people had less shoulder pain because of the way they slept, or if they slept that way because they had less pain.
A later study found that people who slept on their backs with their arms at their sidesthe soldier positionactivated their shoulder muscles less, and thus may experience less shoulder pain.
The Importance Of Good Sleep Posture
In order to improve your sleep posture, it is important to understand what our sleep posture is. Referring to the correct body mechanics of each common sleeping position, a good-quality sleep posture will maintain alignment of your spine and limbs to prevent unnecessary muscle stretching and eventual pain.
And while there is no best sleeping position to improve your posture, it is important to evaluate your most commonly used sleeping positions in order to set yourself up for success. No matter if you sleep on your stomach or back, improving sleep posture will result in a variety of benefits, including less chronic pain and improved overall sleep quality.
Improving Your Sleeping Condition
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Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease is one of the most common respiratory diseases in the UK. An adjustable beds appropriate posture positioning may help relieve the symptoms of COPD. For example, elevating the head of the bed by 45 degrees allows the diaphragm to expand to improve respiratory function and reduce pulmonary venous congestion.
Perfect Posture May Be Just One Night Away
Yes, its very important to be mindful of posture during the day. However, theres a chance that youre undoing all or some of the benefits that are being achieved through things like stretching, exercise and chiropractic alignments if youre sleeping improperly. Learning how to sleep to create better posture can change everything if you suffer from back pain, neck pain or poor sleep. Many people find that they are able to enjoy more restful nights once they commit to staying aligned while sleeping. That means that you can potentially wake up feeling more rested while also erasing back pain once you banish sloppy sleep positions forever. Its very possible that proper sleep posture is the missing link in your path to better health and comfort if youre experiencing pain that isnt going away with daytime posture exercises!
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How To Improve Posture When Sleeping
Do you have rounded shoulders or a forward tilting head? Perhaps you are just, in general, a sloucher.
Unfortunately, poor posture is a very common problem. So if you can say yes to these questions above you are definitely not alone.
The good news is that you can fix your posture, but the bad news is that it takes time and effort.
Basically, you want to focus on doing several things to improve your posture as there often is no single reason for how you got it.
There is probably also not going to be one thing you can do that will fix it.
But since we spend a whole lot of time sleeping every day, why dont take advantage of that and think about how you can use that time efficiently.
Often overlooked, the posture we have when we sleep does make a big difference and a few tweaks could go a long way.
Another often overlooked thing is how we sit, which you can read more about here.
Lets get into it!
On The Side With A Pillow Between The Knees
Lying on the side can be comfortable, but it can pull the spine out of alignment, straining the lower back.
It can be easy to correct this issue by placing a firm pillow between the knees. This raises the upper leg, restoring the natural alignment of the hips, pelvis, and spine.
To get comfortable in this position:
Anyone who usually moves from their side to their front may also want to try hugging a large pillow against their chest and stomach to help keep their back aligned.
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What Is The Best Sleeping Position For Posture
The best position to sleep in is on your back. While youre falling asleep, try lying on your back with a pillow or cushion beneath your knees. This positions your body to provide support to your spine, even if your bed isnt shaped to the curve of your back. If you absolutely cant sleep on your back, try sleeping on your side with your knees bent. You can even place a pillow between the knees to keep your hips aligned.
To keep your body straight in either of these sleeping positions, think to align your ears, shoulders and hips on one flat plane. Any twisting that moves either your ears, shoulders, or hips out of line with the other two is causing strain on your spine. Even when you are getting into bed, repositioning to get comfortable, or getting up in the morning, you want to keep these three spots in line. If you concentrating on moving the trunk of your body as one unit, instead of twisting, you will better support your posture needs.
Ultimately, youll want to sleep either on your side or back with the spine aligned straight. Each one of these options are healthy sleeping positions that will gently support the natural curvature of the spine.
Pillows For Combination Sleepers
Individuals with varying sleep positions should look for a pillow that has higher areas for side sleeping and lower areas for back sleeping. A pillow with a mix of different fillers or a buckwheat hull pillow might be helpful as well. Using a single all-purpose pillow is likely to result in a pillow that is too high for sleeping on the back and too low for sleeping on the side.1
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On The Back In A Reclined Chair Or Bed
This might help people with lower back pain, particularly those with isthmic spondylolisthesis, a condition in which one spinal vertebra slips over the vertebra right below.
If a person gets significant relief from resting in a reclined chair, it may be worth investing in an adjustable bed that can be positioned in the same way.
How To Sleep Better
Most people know that good posture is important. It makes it easier to breathe, opens the lungs up to their full capacity, and prevents back pain. Your back muscles and ligaments heal themselves while you sleep, and proper posture helps them do this. So if you want to protect your back and maintain good health, you should sleep in a way that promotes good posture.
Here are some tips to help you sleep better:
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Maintain A Comfortable Temperature
You should be comfortable, not warm enough to kick off the covers, not so cool that you are shivering, but just right
One way to maintain this temperature is to have warm washcloths on hand so you can regulate your temperature. You can use warm or cold water on the cloths, whichever is more comfortable for you.
If you are too warm, you could wake up to find that you pad your body and arms with blankets and sheets. Put a washcloth over your feet and legs to keep the heat in.
What Are The Signs Of A Good Sleeping Posture
I sleep like a log on most nights to notice whether or not Im lying in a proper posture. Plus, aint nobody got time for that! A good sleeping posture, thankfully, has several benefits that you can easily spot in your everyday routine. Ive listed a few below.
There are so many more. But you get the point.
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Is Your Mattress Comfortable
Mattresses are made of a variety of materials. Some are softer or firmer. The type of material that a mattress is made out of affect your body temperature.
When it comes to the firmness of a mattress, you want one that is firm enough to support your spine, but also soft enough to conform to the shape of your body. People who suffer from back pain may be most comfortable on a mattress that is softer and more cushioning.
You can’t know for sure how your mattress will work out until you’ve been resting on it for a while. When shopping for a mattress, buy one from a store that will let you test it for several weeks and exchange it if it doesn’t work for you.
Sleep Positions For Sleep Apnea And Snoring
People with sleep apnea experience more light sleep and less deep sleep compared with people without apnea. A strong relationship also exists between a history of snoring and complaints of daytime sleepiness. Furthermore, many adults sleep with a partner, and snoring and symptoms associated with sleep apnea can negatively impact a partners’ sleep and daytime functioning. Poor sleep has also been linked to glucose intolerance, insulin resistance, and type 2 diabetes, among other negative health outcomes.
Body position during sleep may reduce snoring and improve sleep apnea. One study found that 50% of patients with mild obstructive sleep apnea and 19% with moderate obstructive sleep apnea both saw a 50% reduction in sleep apnea events by sleeping in a non-supine position. Research also has found that sleeping in the side position decreases the frequency and severity of these events in patients with obstructive sleep apnea and with central sleep apnea. Therefore, sleeping in the side position is recommended for people with both obstructive and central sleep apnea.
In addition to positional therapy, other treatment options for sleep apnea include:
- Avoiding alcohol and certain medications such as sleeping pills
- Using continuous positive airway pressure
- Treating associated medical problems
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How To Sleep For Better Posture Through Exercises
Corrective exercises are also indicated when posture has worsened and/or there are structural changes to the spine. Doing these exercises prior to sleepand then sleeping in a proper position can help with the healing process and health recovery steps leading to a healthier spine, better looking posture, and improved nervous system function with less interference.
Working with a qualified healthcare provider in this regard is a wise step as its been found that your posture is a window to the health of your spine and your spine is a window to your health through your nervous system.
Sleep can certainly play a valuable role for many reasons when it comes to your health, and learning how to sleep well to support that process will be invaluable. Tonight, before you drift off to better places, review your sleep strategy and take note of where you can improve so that you can get some more quality sleep!
How To Choose The Right Mattress
A vital element to getting a good night’s sleep and waking up refreshed, of course. revolves around your mattress. Linked to how the muscles relax while sleeping, our mattresses play a huge part in maintaining good sleeping posture. With such a wide variety of options available, it can be overwhelming knowing where to start, luckily our good friends over at The Mattress Guide have composed a helpful post to guide you on the best mattress for you depending on the way you sleep. Giving you all the know-how on what type of mattress is best for side, back and front sleepers.
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The Neck The Arc Of Life
Every nerve signal from the brain to the Healthy Body and back travels through the neck at speeds over 400 km per hour. When viewed from the side or a persons profile, the neck has an inward bend to it like the arc of a rainbow with the apex or top of the arc facing the front of the person.
This arc is measured at about 60 degrees when we look at someones posture or about 40 to 45 degrees when specially marked on an x-ray. If this arc where to flatten, say to a zero degree arc or a straight line, it can slow the signal or flow of energy through the nerves by as much as a third, to about 280 km per hour. This slowing down of the signal could potentially cause problems in the Healthy Bodys ability to regulate itself.
How To Sleep For Better Posture
We use intention and pay attention to the way we move during work hours. We overlook the fact that sleeping in the proper position can also help improve a persons good posture. There are many benefits of recovering in a good sleeping position. We rest better, recover better, and wake up feeling refreshed. Sitting with good posture at a computer desk for 8 hours is an endurance event. It takes strength, energy, and balance. The less our sleep quality is, the quicker we get tired the next day. The earlier we get tired in the day, the quicker our good posture turns into bad posture. Conversely, using more healthy sleeping habits will directly improve the posture we have throughout the next work day.
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Using A Pillow While Sleeping On The Side
When lying on one’s side, a pillow should support the head and neck so the spine maintains a straight and natural horizontal line. A thicker pillow is needed for sleeping on the side than sleeping on the back.
Bending the knees and placing another pillow between the knees keeps the spine in the neutral position. When there is no support between the legs, the upper leg rotates downward, pulling the pelvis and distorting the natural line of the spine. A firm pillow between the knees usually prevents this downward rotation better than a softer pillow.
Adding support between the knees can prevent back pain and allow the back to heal and rest better while sleeping.
There is limited research on pillows for side sleepers. One small study found the latex pillow the most helpful of five types considered (foam contour-shaped, regular foam, polyester, feather, and standard latex. Study participants reported the most cervical stiffness upon waking after using feather pillows, with the symptoms continuing well into the day.1
Articles On Back Pain
Back pain can make getting through the day hard, but it can make getting a good nightâs sleep even harder. It can be tough to find a comfortable position so you can doze off. And you might not even be able to get in and out of bed without pain.
But good sleep is essential to your health, and an important part of your overall well-being. Studies have found that Americans who ranked their quality of life very good or excellent slept an average of 18 to 23 minutes longer than those who considered their health and quality of life poorer. But studies have shown that not getting enough sleep may actually make you more sensitive to pain.
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