Do you deal with lower back pain at night? Are you losing sleep from back pain? Is it affecting your daily life? You are not alone. Lower back pain, if not managed correctly, can cause a significant loss of sleep. That loss of sleep, in return, can cause our body to have a harder time dealing with pain, limit healing, and actually cause more pain.
The Effects of Lower Back Pain at Night
These two can compound and leave you feeling exhausted and at the end of your rope. Luckily, there are some simple lifestyle changes that can help you manage your lower back pain at night, and prevent additional back pain in the process. Here are some simple, straightforward tools for pain prevention.
Tip #1: Find the Right Mattress
Finding an option that is suitable and comfortable to you is paramount when battling lower back pain at night. The Better Sleep Council recommends that you evaluate your mattress every 5 to 7 years to see if it still fits your needs. The rule of thumb is that reasonably-firm mattresses are the best because they provide optimal support.
Tip #2: Use a Proper Sleeping Position
There is no one size fits all solution when it comes to the best sleeping position, but there are a few that you should stay away from. Two of the worst ways to sleep for those who suffer from lower back pain at night are on the stomach and on the side in curled up in a ball. However you sleep best, there are ways to enhance your sleeping position to restore proper alignment to your spine.
- If you sleep on your side: Have the legs drawn slightly toward the chest, keeping the lower back curve in the correct position. Try adding a pillow between your legs.
- If you sleep on your back: Add a pillow under your knees which allows the lower back to settle a bit and helps with alignment.
- If you sleep on your stomach: If you MUST sleep on your stomach, put a thin pillow (or maybe a towel) under your lower abdomen/groin to push the lower back back up into alignment and ease strain.
Tip #3: Use Support
- For pillows: Use a pillow that keeps your neck in a neutral position, not bent in any direction. It Should fill the space between your neck and your shoulders, but not support the shoulders.
- Use a night roll: This can be bought, or simply be made from a rolled up towel tied around your waist. This fills the space between your hips and rib cage and is a supportive tool for where the spine’s lumbar curve would be usually be compromised.
Tip #4: Stay Active with Exercise:
Experts believe that you should exercise your pain and try to keep moving to the best of your ability. Exercise not only keeps you in motion, but it helps strengthen muscles, keeps your joints fluid, and can help burn energy to get a smoother night of sleep.
Tip #5: Maintain Good “Sleep Hygiene”
A number of concepts are important to getting a good night’s sleep, and they are especially important if you’re losing sleep from back pain. Practicing good sleep hygiene will help you deal with your pain along with enhancing the other efforts you’re making to manage your lower back pain at night. The most important things to do are:
- Quit Smoking.
- Avoid Alcohol especially right before bed.
- Avoid caffeine at least 8 hours before going to bed.
- Don’t overeat before bed.
- Practice relaxation techniques.
- Talk to your doctor about medications.
AHC Has a Tested System in Place to Alleviate Your Pain
According to the National Institute of Health, 8 out of 10 people experience back pain at some point in their lives. If you’re one of them, you may be losing precious sleep due to lower back pain at night. Pain can deprive you of sleep, which in turn, can add to your pain. Even if it seems as if you’re helpless, there is hope. In addition to the things you can try at home, Arrowhead Health Centers has a one of a kind pain management program. Our multi-specialty approach is geared toward discovering and addressing your individual pain needs. We take pain out of the equation, and get you back into a better night’s sleep. If your lower back pain at night still persists or worsens please call us at (623) 777-5587 to speak with one of our representatives, today.