Occasional lower back pain after sleeping, as well as feeling stiff and sore, are common signs that you are aging:) But if you frequently experience lower back pain as well as other body pains during and after you sleep, there are other problems within your body besides the fact that you are getting older. The good news is that there are things you can still do to make sure you wake up feeling rejuvenated and fully energized to start the day, instead of waking up in pain searching for pain relievers.
NB! Two simple exercises for lower back pain (videos) at the end of the post.
Causes Of Lower Back Pain After Sleeping
Causes of lower back pain after sleeping vary. It may be caused by your neck and spine not being aligned for prolonged periods of time while you sleep. Most people just don’t have the perfect position or posture while sleeping, add to that the strenuous everyday life that stress the muscles in their backs resulting in more pain occurring as they sleep.
Sitting down all day
If your work requires you to sit down the whole time, your hip muscles could tighten. This may lead to arching of the spine all over the lower back. Slouching as you sit may also cause your shoulder muscles to tighten, which can result to upper back pain. When these things happen during the day, there is a big chance that you will experience lower back pain after sleeping and waking up the morning of the following day.
Certain positions in bed can further worsen the back pains resulting from your everyday routine and work.
The fetal position, for example, may be a very comfortable position for many people as they sleep. However, this position also tends to arch the back too much and straighten the legs excessively.
Usually, people who experience lower back pains after sleeping only have problems in their sleeping posture and sleeping environment. These lower back pains can also be aggravated by stress and anxiety which create tension in the muscles. This may invite you to curl up even more as you sleep.
Occasional stomach sleeping position can also cause lower back pains after sleeping. Scientists claim that this sleeping position can place a lot of stress on the three natural curves of the spinal column – lumbar, thoracic, and cervical.
Side sleeping and back sleeping can also induce lower back pains after sleeping. Side sleeping can form a pelvic tilt while back sleeping can stress the lumbar part of the spine.
Improper and uncomfortable mattresses and pillows
Besides the sleeping position, there are other factors that can cause you to have lower back pains after sleeping. Improper and uncomfortable mattresses and pillows can also be a reason for having lower back pain after sleeping.
There are many mattresses that can sag or throw the spine off alignment. Usually they are the mattresses that are too soft, so to contradict this, people instead buy mattresses that are too firm. The truth is, however, whether too soft or too firm, both can cause recurring lower back pain after sleeping.
Studies show that the mattresses a person should use should be based on the body type of the person using it.
Softer yet not sagging mattresses are best for people who have waists that are narrower than their hips. Such soft mattresses help in the sleeping posture by absorbing more weight from the pelvis. On the other hand, people who have waists and hips of equal or almost equal measurements have more advantages on mattresses that are firm yet not hard.
Other researches state that the correct sleeping position depends on a pillow that supports the natural curve of the neck and spine. Overstuffed pillows as well as multiple stacked ones can cause back pains due to the improper alignment of the neck and back resulting from lying on it. Regular feather, as well as foam pillows breakdown after a period of using, and can also cause back and neck pains.
Regular replacement of pillows, as well as selection of pillows made from good materials, can contribute to good sleeping positions. Such pillows could be made of memory foam or viscoelastic foam. Pillows with thinner center and thicker edges are ideal for back and side sleepers, for their cervical support.
How To Avoid Lower Back Pain After Sleeping
If you are comfortable sleeping on your stomach, this is a simple activity for you to reduce or avoid risks of lower back pain after sleeping. Before you lie down, perform a posterior pelvic tilting exercise.
You only have to lift your body upwards and apply pressure on your glutes as hard as you can, and then you lay back down. This position will “grasp”, putting the spinal column in a more neutral position. This will prevent your posterior components from jamming, which can cause the lower back pain after sleeping.
There are other beneficial tactics to avoid or reduce lower back pain after sleeping:
- You can place pillows under your abdominals if you sleep on your stomach.
- You should also place pillows in between your knees if you sleep on your side
- and under your legs if you sleep on your back.
Of course, finding the best mattresses and pillows which can provide your body’s sleeping needs is very important.
If replacing mattresses and pillows is not an option (probably because you don’t have a budget for it yet), and you can’t accustom yourself into other sleeping positions that easily, you may try applying natural pain relief creams. They work wonders and some of them are available at affordable prices. Simple applications on your lower back can mean a good night’s sleep.
You can also do self-massaging before you sleep. You’d be surprised to know that a simple massage can let you sleep pain-free all throughout the night.
Here is a simple self massage exercise to release tension in the lower back.
Here is another simple exercise for lower back pain.
For more exercise videos, check out Good Relaxation Online Courses.
To avoid recurring lower back pain after sleeping, you should:
- Take a hot shower to improve blood circulation which relieves pain.
- Stop doing regular work and other strenuous activities at least 2 hours before bedtime.
- Avoid drinking alcohol or caffeine at least 2 hours before going to bed.
- Heavy meals and sugar should be avoided a couple of hours before sleeping.
- Do not oversleep. It may increase muscle stiffness as well as lower back pain after sleeping. When you get up, instead of directly getting upwards, roll to your side to get off your bed.
The most important part is that you should allot some time to determine the real cause of your lower back pain. If you are not sure, go to your physician and ask for his advice.