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How Your Sleeping Position is Affecting Your Back Pain

The National Sleep Foundation recommends the average adult should get an average of 8 hours of sleep each night, which means about a third of our days should be dedicated to sleeping. However, laying in a horizontal position for this amount of time can actually affect the curvature of your spine. Laying in unnatural positions can cause an increased pressure on your spinal column which can lead to back pain. If you are currently experiencing back pain, sleeping can make the pain much worse. So, what are some important habits to keep in mind when you sleep to reduce your back pain? 

Which Position Should You Sleep In?

When we sleep, our bodies tend to toss and turn throughout the night - but what sleeping position is best on our bodies? The best sleeping position is laying your back horizontally flat against the mattress. In this position, your weight is distributed evenly, less pressure is put on your spine, and your internal organs retain their proper alignment. On the contrary, the worst sleeping position is laying on your stomach. In this position, your neck is put in an unnatural position and the natural curvature of your spine can flatten. Lastly, if you prefer to sleep on your side, not all hope is lost. There is evidence that suggests sleeping on your side can cause back pain and muscle imbalance, however this only tends to be the case if you sleep on a poor quality mattress. If you do sleep on your side, putting a pillow in between your legs can keep your pelvis, spine, and hips aligned.

Rate Your Mattress

The quality of your mattress can have a great impact on whether your sleeping position is to blame for your back pain. On television commercials, mattress companies highlight how bad an innerspring mattress can be for your back. However, this isn’t always the case. Although it is true that a poor quality spring mattress will not support the curve of your spine and sets off pressure points, a well made spring mattress can still be a good option for you. The best choice for your back is a foam mattress. Although expensive, foam mattresses adjust to your body’s shape and size. A cheaper option is to buy a foam mattress topper for your spring mattress.

Be Comfortable

Comfort means everything when you’re trying to sleep. Not getting enough sleep can cause you to be moody and more stressed the day after. If this cycle continues for a long period of time, your back pain won’t only be due to your poor night's sleep, but general stress as well. For you health, it’s fundamental to understand your sleeping habits and know when to work around them. This might mean having to adjust the time you go to bed, exercising during the day, participating in stress-relieving activities, or watching your late night eating habits. 

It can be difficult to pinpoint what exactly is causing your back pain - this is where Pain Specialty Group steps in. If you feel you have taken all the right precautions regarding your sleeping habits and nothing seems to be helping, it may be time to reach out to one of our expert providers. Pain Specialty Group specializes in all types of pain, and works to reduce your pain so you can live a happier, healthier life. Contact us here and see how our experienced team can help.

Author
Aidan Fisher Pain Specialty Group

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