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How to Sleep with Lower Back Pain

Lower back pain may make it challenging to work, stay active, and even get a restful night’s sleep. How to sleep with lower back pain is a common question that many people ask. If you’re struggling with this issue, you’re not alone. According to the CDC, in 2019, roughly 39% of adults had back pain. Lower back pain may be caused by a variety of factors, including injuries, poor posture, muscle strains, and degenerative conditions. If you’re wondering how to sleep with lower back pain, we’ve put together some tips that may help. 

5 Tips to Get a Better Night’s Sleep with Lower Back Pain

When determining how to sleep with lower back pain, it’s important to think about your sleeping habits. Getting a full seven to eight hours of restful sleep is essential to maintaining optimal health. Not getting enough sleep may lead to a multitude of health issues. Therefore, if your lower back pain is keeping you awake, it is crucial to find strategies that can help improve your sleep quality. Here are five tips on how to sleep with lower back pain.

1. Invest in a Supportive Mattress and Pillow

A supportive mattress and pillow may make a significant difference in reducing lower back pain. When selecting a mattress, look for one that offers firm support while also contouring to your body’s curves. Similarly, choose a pillow that keeps your neck in a neutral position and supports the natural curve of your spine. To make sleeping more comfortable, consider using a pillow between your knees or an orthopedic wedge beneath your lower back for added support.

2. Improve Your Sleep Posture

The way you sleep may have a big impact on the severity of your lower back pain. It is important to find a sleep position that alleviates the pressure off your spine and supports it in a neutral alignment. Sleeping on your stomach may put undue stress on your lower back, so it’s best to sleep on your back or side. If you sleep on your back, place a pillow under your knees to reduce pressure on your lower back. If you’re a side sleeper, place a pillow between your knees to align your hips and reduce stress on your lower back.

3. Stretch Before Bed

Before going to bed, it is vital to stretch your lower back muscles and ensure they are relaxed. Doing stretches before sleeping can help reduce tension and improve blood flow to the area, which may alleviate pain. Simple stretches such as knee-to-chest stretches, hamstring stretches, and hip stretches can all help relax your lower back muscles. Before trying any new exercise or stretching routine, it is necessary to consult with a doctor or physical therapist to ensure it is safe for you to perform. 

4. Use Heat Therapy

Applying heat to your lower back may help reduce pain and stiffness. There are several methods you can use to apply heat. For example, you can try using a heating pad or warm rice bag for 15-20 minutes prior to bedtime. You can also take a warm bath with Epsom salts to help relax your muscles and reduce inflammation. Avoid falling asleep while using a heating pad or warm rice bag, as this may increase the risk of burns. Additionally, use caution and keep the temperature of the heat source at a comfortable level.

5. Practice Good Sleep Hygiene

The quality of your sleep largely depends on your sleep hygiene. Sleep hygiene is the practice of habits and routines that promote better quality sleep. To practice good sleep hygiene, create a relaxing bedtime routine that involves activities such as reading a book, meditating, stretching, or listening to calming music. Creating a relaxing bedtime routine can help signal to your body that it’s time to wind down and get ready for sleep.

Furthermore, avoid eating large meals, consuming caffeine, or drinking alcohol close to bedtime, as this may disrupt your sleep quality. Moreover, too much screen time before bed can make it harder to fall asleep, so be sure to limit your time on electronic devices in the evening. Finally, create a dark, quiet, and cool environment in your bedroom, and try to keep a consistent sleep schedule by going to bed and waking up at the same time each day.

Alleviate Lower Back Pain with The Spine Pro

Are you trying to figure out how to sleep with lower back pain? Making a few simple adjustments to your sleep environment and habits can help alleviate your symptoms and improve your quality of sleep. However, if you’re experiencing persistent lower back pain and need more targeted treatment, schedule a consultation with Dr. Hooman Melamed at The Spine Pro. With years of experience, Dr. Melamed can help diagnose the root cause of your pain and create a personalized treatment plan to help relieve your symptoms. Book an appointment today to start your path toward a greater night’s sleep.