Sleep is an essential part of life and is something that most of us have struggled with at one point or another. Sleeping is important because allows our body and state of mind to recover from the business, stress, and demands of the day so we feel refreshed in the morning. Most of us don’t sleep enough, which affects how productive we are during the day. If you’ve ever been jet lagged, you understand how difficult it is to fall asleep at night, or stay awake during the day.
But sometimes the reason we can’t sleep may be due to neck, shoulder, low back, or hip pain. Many “solutions” we might try to help increase comfort include:
- Changing sleep positions (side, stomach, back)
- Trying different pillows to support the head and neck
- Using pillows for support (between the knees or underneath the stomach)
- Elevating the legs
- Buying a new mattress (an expensive “solution”)
These tips may help but are just bandaids for temporary relief. If you continue to have pain, you may want to look at what you’re doing during the day instead how you’re sleeping at night.
I have a lot of clients who come in and complain of lower back pain when they wake up in the morning and most of time, there’s a direct relationship between how much they sit during the day. If you’re like most Americans, you have a job that requires you to sit in front of a computer for 8 hours/day. The more sitting we do, the tighter our hip muscles become which causes pain when we stand up straight or when we lie down on our back.
So instead of focusing on how you sleep, look at what you’re doing during the day that may prevent you from getting a good night’s sleep.