Sleeping

Place a pillow between the knees and arms when lying on your side.

This can improve symptoms by allowing the hips to rest in neutral alignment, cushions the knees, and supports the shoulders and mid-back.

Alleviate tension before bed.

If you find it hard to fall asleep due to pain or wake during the night due to aches and pains, try engaging in some gentle stretching near bedtime. You can use a Massage Ball or Foam Roller exercise to work on any painful points before bed. As always, use the Diaphragmatic Breathing exercise in bed to improve sleep and comfort.

Find a comfortable spine position when lying in bed.

It is easy to carry over muscle imbalances and postural habits formed during the day when you rest in bed. A common habit for the low back is to lie with an excessive arch in the lower back. You can minimize this arch and the compression it can create on the lumbar vertebrae by flattening the back into a neutral position (arched slightly off of the bed). Use the Supine Pelvic Tilt exercise to find a comfortable position. It’s okay if this pelvic posture changes throughout the night as you sleep.

The head posture we adopt can also carry over into nighttime habits. This often results in the head being curled forward with the chin close to the chest. This can lead to tension in the front of the neck and chest, which can irritate symptoms the next day. Try to position your head so that it is in line with your body. It may move during the night, but it will be less likely to tense up when you start in this position.

Practice good sleep hygiene.

  • Minimize the factors which can disrupt sleep.
  • Limit caffeine and alcohol before bed
  • Limit screen time before bed, or use night shift to reduce bright blue light exposure
  • Turn devices on Do Not Disturb to avoid disruptions to sleep
  • Minimize light sources in the room by shutting curtains and unplugging luminous charges
  • Keep pets and other allergens out of the bedroom