Published On: Thu, Aug 13th, 2020

Best Sleep Positions That Will Fight Morning Pain and Stiffness

A good night’s sleep is crucial to nearly every aspect of your physical and mental well-being. This natural restorative process helps strengthen immunity, boost learning and memory, improve your mood, and reduce your risk of heart disease, diabetes, and other serious health problems. Most people understand the importance of getting enough sleep, but many don’t reap the full benefits of a restful night. One of the main reasons for this is a failure to sleep in the right position.

Even if you’re consistently clocking at least 6-8 hours a night, you may still feel pain or discomfort upon waking up. If you struggle with this, there’s a good chance you aren’t sleeping in a position that allows for restorative sleep. Luckily, sleep experts have identified several positions that will prevent you from feeling uncomfortable once you wake up in the morning. Here are some of the best sleep positions that fight morning pain and stiffness. 

Sleeping on Your Back

While it might feel natural to sleep on your side without any cushioning, this method is likely causing you serious pain and discomfort. A good alternative position to try if you regularly wake up to pain or stiffness is sleeping on your back. It might take some time for you to adjust to becoming a back sleeper, but you’ll likely find that much of your discomfort is gone after getting used to this position. 

To have the best experience while resting on your back, it helps to use two different types of pillows. First, place a rounded pillow under your neck to support its curve. You can then add a flatter pillow to provide your head with the cushioning it needs. Using the best pillow for neck pain can help to keep neck pain or stiffness at bay when you wake up. If you struggle with back or knee pain, place pillows under your lower back and knees as well. This supports the natural curve of your spine and helps you fall asleep naturally, allowing you to be pain-free in the morning.

Sleeping on Your Stomach

If you’re a natural stomach sleeper, you may be disheartened to hear experts’ claim that this is one of the worst positions for back pain. Fortunately, this isn’t necessarily true. While sleeping on your stomach often leads to back pain, you can prevent this from happening by slightly adjusting your position.

First, place a pillow under your lower abdomen and pelvis. This helps to reduce the amount of pressure on your back, which can decrease your risk of feeling pain the next morning. If you still feel slightly uncomfortable after taking this step, try adding another pillow under your head. Placing a pillow under your head plays a vital role in relieving neck pressure, which is a common cause of morning stiffness. 

Not only do these adjustments help to promote a healthier and more comfortable sleeping environment, but they also may provide relief for people with certain medical conditions. For example, those who have degenerative disc disease, a condition in which a damaged disc leads to pain or discomfort, may benefit from sleeping on their stomachs with proper cushioning. 

Sleeping on Your Side

Good news for all you side sleepers: this is one of the most natural positions for maintaining the curve of your spine. However, it’s important to note that side sleeping can cause pain if done incorrectly. If you feel most comfortable resting on your side, make sure you’re using the right pillows. Try to use a pillow that’s higher under your neck than under your head to keep your spine straight and to prevent neck stiffness. If lower back or knee pain is a regular struggle for you, place a pillow below your knees or back to keep discomfort at bay. Overall, the important thing is to avoid placing pillows under your head or back that are too high or low.

Sleeping in the Fetal Position

If you have a herniated disc, a good solution is to sleep on your side in the fetal position. A herniated disc, which is a common medical condition that occurs in the vertebrae, can lead to severe pain, weakness, or numbness in the lower back and limbs. If a herniated disc makes it difficult for you to enjoy your everyday life, it’s a good idea to find the relief you need by changing your sleeping position.

To achieve the fetal position, get into bed and lie on your side. Next, put a pillow under your head and neck, making sure to place the elevated part of the pillow directly underneath your neck. Finally, draw your knees up to your chest and verify that your back is completely straight. 

Once you master this sleeping position, you can find significant relief from your medical condition. Resting in the fetal position helps reduce the discomfort of a herniated disc by opening up your joints. Studies have even shown that this position decreases the bending of the spine, which makes a big difference in terms of reducing the symptoms of a herniated disc.

Other Tips

These sleeping positions can help you enjoy restorative sleep night after night. However, it’s important to note that the way you choose to sleep isn’t enough to relieve morning pain and stiffness. To feel truly refreshed each morning, it’s also crucial to invest in products that address your specific needs. If you regularly struggle with back pain, for example, sleeping on the best mattress for back pain will let you move past the discomfort you normally experience. It’s also a good idea to seek out pillows and other sleep aids that help you overcome your discomfort. 

Getting the Rest You Deserve

Everyone needs consistent quality sleep to be at their best every single day. By adopting the right sleeping position, you can feel well-rested on a daily basis. Be sure to try out various positions to see which one is right for you. Soon enough, achieving quality sleep will become a reality in your life.

Resources— Physical Therapy First, Healthline, Medical News Today

Author: Tushar Savkar

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