During the Holiday Season we all want to be at our best. Whether we’re decking the halls with boughs of holly (fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la), or you’re going to a birthday party at the home of Farmer Gray, so you can have a perfect ending of a perfect day, getting a good night sleep is always a top priority.
Yet if you have back or neck pain, is there a sleeping position that is better than another?
Waking up in pain is frustrating and down right annoying. What’s worse is when we don’t feel well rested. Nobody wants to be a Grinch for the holidays, so don’t sleep like one (see video here)
“What’s the best sleeping position?” is a question I get all the time.
In order to be your best self this Holiday Season, and to avoid being a “Grinch” for Christmas,
here are the two sleeping positions that I generally recommend to all my patients.
Whether you have back or neck pain, there are two sleeping positions I would recommend:
Important points: keeping your spine in a neutral position, where it isn’t sagging or twisting.
In the neck, note how you can draw a line from the head to the tailbone. Keep the neck from being tilted too much toward either shoulder.
Sleep with a pillow between your knees to keep your low back from twisting. This is especially important for women, whose hips are naturally wider and are more likely to twist the low back while sleeping.
Neck in a neutral position (not bent forwards or backwards) with a pillow or bolster under the knees, between a 30 and 45 degree angle. This will help take pressure off the low back.
Now many people start out in these two positions, but will wake up through the night in a different position.
That’s ok. Just get right back into one of these sleeping positions. That way you will spend more time in a position where your body can rest and less time in a position of irritation.
Above all, find a position that's comfortable to you. Each person's body is a little different, so you may need to alter these positions for your perfect sleeping position.
Until next time, I wish you and your family peace, joy, and a good night's sleep!
P.S. Special thanks to The Grinch for modeling the proper sleeping positions. I told him service makes our heart grow a few sizes “one step at a time”. 🙂