Are Your Sleep Habits Contributing to Your Neck Pain or Back Pain in Woodlawn?

Are Your Sleep Habits Contributing to Your Neck Pain or Back Pain in Woodlawn?

neck pain

There are 24 hours in each day and we spend roughly 6-8 of those hours in bed. That\'s ¼ to 1/3 of our day! Could your sleep habits be contributing to your neck pain or back pain? What we sleep on, how we sleep, what we sleep with and even how much sleep we get can cause direct or indirect problems with our spine and other parts of our bodies.

How old is your mattress? Is it soft? Firm? How often do you flip and turn it? The general consensus in the mattress industry is that the lifespan of the average mattress is between 7-10 years. This seems a bit long, in my opinion as we spend so many hours on our bed. You can help extend the life of your mattress by not only flipping it put also rotating it (head to foot). You should flip and/or rotate every 3 months or so. We all have our preferences as to how soft or firm a mattress should be but any mattress should be supportive when you lay on it. If it dips or \"gives\" too much your spine will dip with it. You should occasionally lay on your back and side and pay attention to your spine. Does the mattress have enough give so that some of you sinks into the mattress allowing your spine to stay relatively straight and supported? Does the mattress have so much give that your heavier \"parts\" sink in and leave your spine a curvy mess? Go on…have a lie down. See what you think of your current mattress.

The next questions are what do you sleep with and how do you sleep? A flat pillow? A bunch of big fluffy pillows? Back or side sleeper? Stomach sleeper (NO!)? Good sleep hygiene dictates that we sleep with as little \"clutter\" in bed and around ourselves as possible. Clearing the area helps clear the mind and offer the body a good place to rest (I guess you can let your spouse stay). You should use just enough of a pillow so that your spine remains relatively straight and supported (see a pattern here). For example, if you sleep on your side the pillow should fill the gap between the shoulder that is against the mattress and the natural position of your head as if you were standing. You do not want too flat a pillow to allow your head to fall toward the mattress and you don\'t want so much fluff that your head is pushed high up causing a big bend in your neck the opposite way. Same for back sleepers…you don\'t want your head pushed too far into a flexed position for hours while sleeping. Whatever you do, please don\'t tell me you\'re a stomach sleeper! This causes all kinds of twists, turns and compression of the spinal joints and discs and you will suffer for it down the road. Try a body pillow in front of you until you get out of the stomach sleeping habit. You\'ll get the feeling of your weight on your front without getting the full twisting of being on your stomach. Your discs and spinal nerves will thank you!

Sleep is the time when our body does most of its regeneration and healing. At Barrett Family Chiropractic in Woodlawn, Maryland we are always reaching out to our patients to help them get better and more restorative sleep. This helps greatly with their overall treatment plan. Try some of the things mentioned above to improve your sleep. Good sleep habits and healthier sleep positions reduce the strain on your spine, discs and nerves while they need to concentrate on restoring and healing. Call us at 410-265-9911 so that Dr. Barrett can help you sleep healthier I order to reduce neck pain and back pain. This will allow you to heal better as you are achieving your health goals!

Let us help you live, and sleep, pain-free!

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