Have you ever woken up from a night of sleep with a stiff neck and back pain? Did you wonder why you went to sleep feeling perfectly fine but now have this unexplained pain that seems to have come out of nowhere? Morning aches and pains can be frustrating and confusing, especially if you do not already have back issues or an injury that would explain the pain. A good night’s sleep should have you feeling refreshed and ready to start the day. If nothing in your daily schedule has changed, then the pain you are waking up with could be due to your pillow and mattress. Becoming aware of how your pillow and mattress can lead to a stiff neck and/or back pain will help you find your perfect match.
What is Your Sleep Position?
People tend to fall asleep in the same position every night, and every position has a different impact on the body. However, there are certain positions that may be the cause for your pain.
Those who sleep on their stomach are more likely to have back pain because this position causes the spine to be pulled out of alignment. The twisting and contorting that stomach sleepers do in order to become comfortable also puts extra pressure on the neck and lower back. This can also cause poor circulation. If you are someone who sleeps on their back, try to train yourself to sleep on your side. You can usually do this by propping your trunk up with a pillow.
Do you have the right pillow?
Even though the issue is more serious for those who sleep on their stomachs, people who sleep on their sides can also be pulling their spine out of alignment by using the incorrect pillow. Even if you have the right sleep position, sleeping on the wrong pillow can lead to major issues.
Having the right pillow is just as important as having the right mattress when it comes to spine alignment. You want to choose a pillow with the right amount of loft for your sleep position. Those who sleep on their side want to choose a pillow that is more supportive and has a higher loft. People who sleep on their stomachs need to choose a pillow with a lower profile. As for those who sleep on their backs, they are able to choose either a pillow with a high loft or a low loft, depending on their personal preference.
Most individuals who experience back pain and stiffness should look at the firmness of their mattress. If you wake up with back pain but are able to stretch and get rid of the pain within 15-30 minutes, then that is a big sign that your mattress is doing more harm than good. Another indicator that your mattress is doing more harm is if you find yourself waking up more often or tossing and turning while trying to fall asleep. Keep in mind that if you are not prone to back pain, you should replace your mattress every eight years.
Let’s Go Shopping!
Everyone has their own preference, but when looking for the right mattress, find one that isn’t too firm or too soft. A mattress that is too firm will push on your pressure point and cause misalignment. A mattress that is too soft allows your body to sink into the bed which causes bad posture while you sleep and can cause neck or back pain.
Mattresses are not a cheap item to purchase; however, investing in a good one is something you should consider. After all, you will be spending seven to nine hours on your mattress every night.
It is always a good idea to get a wellness adjustment before going mattress shopping. This can help alleviate any pain you are experiencing and help you improve your posture and body support. The staff here at North County Pain Relief can help you do just that. Give us a call at (314) 731-4201 so we can help you get on your way to finding the perfect mattress and pillow.