Monday, August 15, 2022

How Do You Sleep With Sciatica Pain

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How Can Sleep Positions Affect Sciatica

How to Sleep with Sciatica | DO’s and DONT’s Explained

While some of the causes of sciatica can be quite severe, in most cases, it is simply a matter of time before the pain passes. The biggest concern for many patients is the pain itself, particularly in how it can intrude on daily tasks and, most importantly, affect ones rest and sleep. Not getting enough sleep can, in turn, worsen the pain.

Posture has a lot to do with how pronounced sciatica can be. Any sort of additional compression of the nerve can lead to greater pain, while learning to decompress the nerve and utilize targeted stretches to bring about relief can stave off pain.

When sleeping with sciatica, a patients position can have an impact on how bad the pain gets, particularly if any twisting or spinal flexion is involved. This can cause further pressure on the sciatic nerve and worsen the pain down a patients buttock and leg. On the other hand, observing a few simple tips and tricks can help you reduce your sciatic pain at night, and hopefully even get a full nights rest.

Pick The Best Sleeping Position For Sciatica

The best way to sleep with sciatica is to find a sleeping position that works for you, and stick with it. Many patients find that even if they can stay in one position for most of the night, it gives them the minimum amount of sleep they need to function during the day. And, for many, by finding the right position, you can avoid most of your nighttime pain.

As we talked about in our post on the best sleeping position for lower back pain, lying flat on your back is best for many people. But this is slightly different with sciatica. Lying on your back may be best, but others prefer to lie on their sides.

If you can lie on your back, elevate your knees with a few pillows stacked between them and the bed.

If you are a side sleeper, bend your top knee and pull it towards your head. Prop your knee with two to three pillows, so your hips are squared while you sleep.

Sciatica Home Remedies And Self

Regardless of the cause, about 90% of people with sciatica will get better without surgerymost of them in just a few weeks. You can start treating your sciatica at home. In fact, home treatment may be all you need, especially if you know that your sciatica is caused by an injury or pregnancy.

Even if you don’t know what’s causing your sciatica, you can take steps to relieve your pain at home. Call your doctor if the pain isn’t manageable or under certain other circumstances.

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The Worst Sleeping Position For Sciatica

Sleeping on your stomach

If youre looking for ways to make the back pain worse, then sleeping on your stomach might be the best one. Sleeping on the stomach is by far the worst sleeping position, regardless of whether you have sciatica or not. Even if you back is perfectly healthy, if you keep sleeping on your stomach, at some point you might develop some painful condition.

Sleeping on the stomach is bad for several reasons:

  • The natural spine curvature is flattened, causing additional pressure on the sciatic nerve,
  • With the head turned completely to one side, there is tension on the neck,
  • The twisting of the neck can cause long-term damage to the spine
  • The twisting of the neck can also cause a herniated disk
  • Your own weight increases the pull on the spine, furthering the lower back issues
  • Sleeping on the stomach is the worst sleeping option, especially for people with back problems. However, if that is really the only way you can fall asleep, then make sure to use thin pillows that will lessen the angle between your head and the neck. Furthermore, you will need to start putting a pillow under your pelvis as this will help keep the spine in a neutral position. Not to mention, morning exercise and stretching should become indispensable in your morning routine, as it will help you get your body properly aligned again.

    Listen To Relaxing Music

    How should i sleep with lower back pain

    A hot bubble bath a relaxing way to prepare your body for bed. Hot water works to open pores and relax your muscles helping to mentally prepare you for bed. Sciatic nerve pain is often caused by compression so taking some weight off is always a good way to relax. Not sure where to start check out some of my favorites!

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    Stop Yourself From Lying On Your Painful Side

    So, one side is more painful than the other, but youre prone to rolling around a lot in your sleep. What do you do?

    An ingenious commenter on a sciatica forum suggests:

    After nights of waking myself in pain, I started wearing workout shorts with pockets to bed and I put a tennis ball in the right one. Now I dont turn on that side anymore!

    This simple solution stopped them from rolling over in the middle of the night, and could help you!

    How Can I Sleep With Sciatica Pain During Pregnancy

    Because you cannot use heavy-duty pain relievers during pregnancy, sleeping with sciatica when you are pregnant presents a whole new set of challenges.

    First, Pay very close attention to your posture throughout the day as this can help reduce the pain and stress you put on your spine. Utilize the bedtime routines already discussed to help bring relaxation.

    However, be careful when you are stretching, especially in the latter part of the second trimester and third trimester.

    Analgesic rubs or warm compresses can also bring some relief to help you get to sleep.

    Finally, sleep on a firm, supportive surface, positioned on your side with pillows between your legs to keep your spine in alignment.

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    Mattress Warranty And Other Policies

    Most online mattress companies offer sleep trials so you can try out the mattress in your own home before committing to a purchase. You should look for a sleep trial thats at least 90 nights long, which will give your body time to adjust to the feel of the new mattress. Some mattress companies impose mandatory break-in periods or charge return fees, so be sure to check the fine print before ordering.

    After the sleep trial ends, a mattress warranty can protect you against premature sagging, ensuring your mattress will continue to deliver the support you need to reduce sciatica pain. Mattress warranties tend to last at least 10 years and cover significant defects in materials and workmanship. That said, mattress warranties shouldnt be the main factor that influences which mattress you buy.

    Maintain Good Sleep Hygiene

    How to SLEEP BETTER With Sciatica Pain

    There are many ways on how to sleep better with lower back pain and sciatica. One important reminder that is usually dismissed by many individuals is maintaining good sleep hygiene or sleeping habits.

    Good sleeping habits mean:

    Maintaining a sleep schedule with consistent bedtime-wake time

    Avoiding stimulants a few hours before going to bed

    Doing gentle yoga exercises or stretches

    Taking a relaxing, warm bath

    Listening to soothing or calming music

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    Dont Sleep On Your Painful Side

    For many individuals battling sciatica, one side may be more painful than the other. Sometimes, when we toss and turn at night, we end up on our more painful side — this should be avoided whenever possible. Some sciatica pain sufferers even put a tennis ball in the pocket of their PJs to prevent them from rolling onto their painful side.

    What To Look For In A Mattress

    It can feel overwhelming to sift through the confusing terminology that saturates the mattress industry. At the end of the day, however, buying a mattress basically boils down to a few key points. Focusing on the following factors can help you see past the marketing hype and choose the best mattress for your sciatica.

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    The Best Sleeping Positions For Sciatica

    March 15, 2020// by Terry Cralle//

    Sciatica is a painful condition, that is usually triggered by the irritation of the sciatic nerve. Even though the narrative in regards to sciatica is almost non-existent, many people get affected by the painful condition.

    In the past decade, the sciatica cases have doubled, and alongside scoliosis and fibromyalgia, sciatica is one of the most common and widespread conditions.

    Alongside numerous difficulties sciatica patients have to deal with, almost all of them point out the fact that they cannot find a proper sleeping position that will reduce the pain and pain-related anxiety and stress.

    That is why, in the following paragraphs, were going to take a look at the best sleeping positions for people suffering from sciatica. There are also many ways you can prevent this condition from affecting the quality of your sleep.

    Hopefully, the presented information will allow you to finally get a good-quality snooze, so lets get started!

    Find A Better Sleeping Surface

    How To Sleep with Sciatica (Sleeping Recommendations ...

    When trying to sleep with sciatica, its best to sleep on a firm mattress. If a new mattress isnt in the budget, you could try a few different sleeping places to see if it helps your pain.

    This might include sleeping in a guest room with a firmer mattress, especially on nights when your pain flares up.

    You may also try sleeping on the floor, with a yoga mat or sheet underneath you. As Spine-Health explains, some people actually experience less nighttime discomfort and pain when sleeping on the floor. It may take a few days for you to get used to the floor, so dont give up after only one night.

    If the floor doesnt do it for you, try a recliner. Many patients love this option, saying that it allows them to actually sleep through the night.

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    The Anatomy Of Sciatica

    For those who are not familiar and want to know more, sciatica is a condition that is usually caused by the irritation of the sciatic nerve. The pain manifests itself in the lower back, so many people confuse it with strained muscles and other injuries.

    Note: The main distinction between sciatica and other lower back injuries is that the sciatic pain moves to the lower legs and affects a wider region, not just the lower back. Sciatica usually affects one side of the lower back or one leg.

    Such pain distribution makes sleep more complicated, so it is not uncommon that people with sciatica also develop sleep disorders, like interrupted sleep or sleep anxiety.

    Talk To Your Doctor About Pain

    Consulting your doctor about pain management is always a good idea, especially if none of our other tips are providing you with the comfort and rest you need. Your doctor may want to recommend pain-relieving creams or patches which have proven to be effective for many people. They may also want to discuss further treatment options and possible causes for your discomfort other than sciatica.

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    How Does Sciatica Affect Sleep

    Sciatica interacts with the quality of sleep you get due to the pain and discomfort it causes. It is not uncommon for sciatica to flare up at night and in the morning. Why does sciatica get worse at night? Mostly because it has built up pressure, strain, and stress throughout your entire day and is ready for some relief. Ideally, sleeping will provide the rest and recovery you need but only if you cater to your sciatic pain in the process.

    Place A Pillow Between Your Knees

    How to Sleep PAIN-FREE With Back Pain & Sciatica

    Placing a pillow between your knees helps keep your pelvis and spine in a neutral position. It also prevents your legs from rotating during the night.

    How to set up:

  • First, put your shoulder on your mattress and then settle the rest of your body against your mattress.
  • Bend knees slightly and put a thin pillow between them.
  • You can also put a small pillow under your waist if theres a gap.
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    What You Should Know About Sleeping With Sciatica Pain

    Living with sciatica can be especially challenging, particularly when it comes to getting a good nights sleep. While there are not any clear-cut solutions for people experiencing sciatic nerve pain, Comprehensive Medical Care has provided some simple tips below that may help our patients find enough pain relief to sleep through the night. Please contact us today to schedule a free consultation to learn more about our treatment options for sciatica at our three convenient New Jersey locations.

    Sleeping With Sciatica Dos And Donts

    August 18, 2018 by guestpost

    The sciatic nerve extends from the lower back, through the buttocks and hips, and down along each leg. Some individuals are affected by sciatica, which causes pain in the sciatic nerve. Common causes can be a bone spur on the spine, a herniated disc, or a narrowing in the spine. That pain can radiate down along the path of the sciatic nerve. There may also be inflammation and numbness. Sciatica typically affects only one side of the body. Nonetheless it can be uncomfortable and difficult to ease.

    Individuals with sciatica may wonder what techniques they can use for the prevention and management of their pain. Learn about how you can best manage your sciatica pain, especially while in a prone position for sleeping, with a few Dos and Donts:

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    Experimenting With Sleeping Positions

    Theres no perfect sleeping position, mattress or pillow that always works for sciatica pain. But that doesnt mean you have to suffer night after night. With the help of a physical therapist, you can figure out which sleeping position will work best for you.

    Start with good spinal alignment

    As a starting point, see if sleeping with a straight back is comfortable for you. Many people find that getting their spine in a neutral position is helpful, says Sieberth.

    When you lie down, ensure that your head, shoulders and hips are in a straight line, she adds. Put a small pillow under your neck and head but not your shoulders. Sometimes its necessary to put a pillow under your knees to prevent your back from arching too much. Once you get in this position, think about what hurts or what feels good. Then you can tweak your sleeping position from there.

    Try side sleeping

    Some people find that side sleeping is comfortable. It can take some of the pressure off your sciatic nerve, especially if you sleep on the side opposite of where it hurts.

    Putting a pillow between your knees can make side sleeping more comfortable, Sieberth says. It aligns your hips and takes pressure off the pelvis. Another option is to place a pillow behind your back for support. This also keeps you from rolling onto your back.

    Curve it forward

    You can mimic this at night and get some quality sleep by:

    If arching your back feels good, try stomach sleeping

    Try A Few Massage Techniques

    Sleeping Positions That Help Relieve Back Pain

    Its never a bad idea to learn some sciatica massages that you can try at home. These techniques can help ease lower back pain to enable you to get a good nights sleep.

    Besides stretching your body and having a warm shower, this massage therapy could be added to your nighttime routine. With all of them combined, youll have a higher chance of relaxing and falling asleep with no trouble.

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    The Best Sleeping Positions For Patients With Sciatica Pain

    The best sleeping positions for patients with sciatica pain include sleeping on your side and sleeping on your back. Not only do these positions help prevent neck and back pain, but they also help reduce snoring, wrinkles, and the symptoms associated with acid reflux. Sleeping on your side also elongates the spine and helps keep it properly aligned, while sleeping on your back helps maintain optimal head, neck, and spine alignment. If you do sleep on your back, be sure to lie flat with your knees elevated slightly on a pillow. Depending on which side of your lower back you feel pain, try sleeping on the other side only. Arrange your pillows to prevent you from turning over or invest in a body pillow for additional support in your chosen sleeping position.

    Other Tips For Optimal Sleeping With Sciatica

    If you are struggling sleeping with sciatica, its important to visit a professional. Sometimes, sciatica can reveal a much more dangerous condition, and diagnosing it as early as possible can help you save a lot of pain and time.

    If, however, your only option towards feeling better is to wait it out, then simple posture and movement tips both on and off the mattress can make a world of difference. Movement is important with sciatica, so consider picking up a few simple stretches, and take the time to go for a short walk at least several times a week. Your body recovers faster with a little exercise.

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    Dont Use A Mattress That Is Too Soft

    While a soft bed might be your preference, if you have developed sciatica, it might not be the best idea. A mattress that is firmer could well help make your nights more comfortable as you wont be sinking into an overly soft mattress that puts your spine out of alignment. So, try and get yourself a medium-firm mattress or consider putting something firmer under your existing mattress, such as plywood. The Sleep Foundation has put together an article about the best mattresses for sciatica if you decide a new mattress is the way to go.

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