Part 3 of 3: How to Relieve Back Pain for a Better Night’s Sleep - The Physio Revolution

Part 3 of 3: How to Relieve Back Pain for a Better Night’s Sleep

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If you are struggling to get a good night’s sleep, wake up feeling tired and sluggish, or find it really hard to get comfortable in bed from low back pain, then this blog is for you…

We hear all the time from our clients how getting a good night's rest can be nearly impossible, especially when back pain is at its worst.

As well as dealing with back pain, people we speak to frequently suffer with poor quality & quantity of sleep. And we know if you're not sleeping well, this effects your energy levels and your mood - especially to your loved ones.

In this blog, we are going to cover how to avoid worsening back pain at night and how to get better sleep with natural, easy solutions to implement in your life starting today.

How to Lessen Back Pain So You Can Fall Asleep

If you struggle to fall asleep and back pain is on your mind, there are a number of natural, easy ways to reduce back pain and help you get comfortable in bed.

What To Do:

Since you're likely busy and your system can be on overdrive when struggling with back pain, a good starting point is to establish a nightly routine that allows you to wind down before trying to fall asleep. This sets your body up each night for an understanding that it needs to prepare for sleep. You'll want to do this around 30-60 minutes before the time you want to fall to sleep.

This could include turning off the TV and phones or tablets, picking up a book and reading in a soft light, drinking warm tea, knitting, a warm bath before bed, listening to soothing music or journalling your thoughts.

You could also do some light, gentle stretching exercises to loosen your muscles which can reduce back pain.

What To Avoid:

If you find you are still struggling to fall to sleep, there are a few key factors that can impact this beyond just the back pain: You'll wan to avoid alcohol, TV or blue light from screens at least 30-60 mins before bed, big meals for evening dinners, and avoid caffeinated drinks after 2pm.

If you apply some of these tips to your life, you should be able to reduce back pain without painkillers and help you to fall to sleep.

What’s The Best Sleeping Position For Reducing Back Pain?

Now, the next step to focus on is getting into a comfortable sleeping position which won’t aggravate your back pain.

The best sleeping position will depend on your preference, however, to stop back pain at night and get better sleep, you will want to keep your spine in alignment and here are some things you can do to make sure that happens.

Sleeping On Your Side

If you sleep on your side, there are a couple of options that can help you sleep without back pain.

The best option is to sleep with your left or right shoulder in contact with the mattress, along with the rest of that side of your body, with a pillow between your knees.

An important thing to remember with side sleeping is to alternate which side you sleep on to avoid creating any imbalances.

Lastly, remember that sleeping on your side alone won’t reduce back pain. It’s using the pillow between your knees and legs, that makes the big difference, as the pillow will keep your hips, your pelvis, and your spine in better alignment.

Sleeping On Your Back - Only Temporary Use Pillows

If you sleep on your back, this is a great sleeping position as it evenly distributes your body wide across the widest area, and therefore puts less pressure on specific points.

If needed for more relief, place a pillow or a stack of pillows underneath your knees, which will help keep pressure off of your lower back. Ideally, this is not to be used long term as it's going to be difficult to get upright after being in this position for too long. You can also place a rolled-up towel under the small of your back too for added support.

Watch Dr. Brooke's explanation in the video above.

Brooke Olsen

Brooke Olsen

Co-Founder, Director of Physical Therapy
Brooke is a physical therapist, director of physical therapy, and co-founder at The Physio Revolution. She has worked with professional athletes from Olympic level and recreational weekend warriors to others who are in need of regaining their independence and mobility back in their everyday life. Brooke works extensively with all of the PT’s and spends a vast amount of her time ensuring our treatment plans keep pace with the rapid advancements that make physical therapy so effective and such a ‘go-to’ profession for people aged 45+.
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