Back Pain and Sleep

Dear Readers,

In this week’s newsletter from Orthomedical.in, we will focus on back pain and sleep. Back pain affects you or a family member and you might despair of ever getting a good night’s sleep. We came across this article in webmd and wanted to share it with our readers. Pain can disturb the sleep that your family needs, night after night. But experts say that with proper treatment, the chances are very good that you or your loved one can get relief from back pain and enjoy normal sleep. Below, find out about lifestyle tips for better sleep.

  • Choose a comfortable mattress and pillow. You don’t have to spend thousands of dollars on a mattress. Studies show that a medium-firm mattress is best for most people. The key is to use whatever is comfortable for you. If your mattress is too firm, you can add an egg crate mattress pad. Pillows come in all shapes and sizes. Find the one that’s right for you.
  • Sleep in a comfortable position, although try not to sleep on your stomach. It can cause you to arch your back. Bending backwards often aggravates chronic back pain. To break the habit, wear a sleep shirt with a pocket in front and put a tennis ball in it. For most people, the best position is to lie on your side in a fetal position with a pillow between your legs. If you prefer to lie on your back, put a pillow under your knees.
  • Establish a bedtime routine. Try to go to bed at the same time each night. Follow a routine, such as setting the alarm, putting on your pajamas, and brushing your teeth. Do not read, work, or watch TV in bed.
  • Minimize stress. Stress is the major cause of insomnia. It is also associated with chronic back pain.
  • Limit or eliminate caffeine. Even moderate caffeine use can cause insomnia and sleep disturbances.
  • Avoid eating heavily before bedtime. A heavy meal can cause acid reflux (heartburn) and keep you awake.
  • Don’t self-medicate with alcohol. It’s worth restating that alcohol impairs the quality of sleep.
  • Do some soothing exercises. Try relaxation techniques and ask your health provider or physical therapist about helpful exercises that you can do to help your back before going to bed.
While the best way to get a good night’s sleep is to get rid of chronic back pain, this is not always possible. Other factors such as stress, anxiety, and depression that affect sleep and pain might also need attention and treatment. Many people put up with pain, when in fact most back pain can be helped and treated successfully. Don’t give up on finding a treatment that can work for you.
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