Tips on getting a great nights rest
Sleep plays an incredibly important role in good health and well-being throughout our lives. Getting sufficient sleep helps protect both mental and physical health, keeps us safe throughout the day and enhances our quality of life.
Sometimes though, even after getting enough sleep we still feel groggy when waking up. This can is often caused by our posture when we sleep.
What is the best way to sleep at night?
Our sleeping posture has a big effect on the quality of sleep we get and how we function during the day.
The best way to sleep at night – Sleeping on our backs!
Sleeping on your back is the best posture for getting a good night’s sleep. It allows your internal organs to expand and relax. While it is not the most common sleeping pattern, it is the healthiest. This position also allows your spine to relax into its most natural alignment.
Some people find that lying on their back puts undue pressure on the hips. If this is the case then a simple solution is to place a pillow beneath your legs and leave them slightly bent.
Is it alright to sleep on my side?
Sleeping on your side is not as good for your back and spine as sleeping on your back, however it is still an acceptable way to sleep. Sleeping on your side is probably the most common way to sleep as well.
Sleeping on your side can cause neck and shoulder problems. To avoid these you need to be mindful of where you are putting your arm while asleep. Do not to place it overhead as this crunches up the neck area, and can cause neck pain.
Another problem that can arise is a twisted pelvis caused by one leg being fixed up too high towards the chest. Placing a pillow between your legs will relieve pressure on the knees, and keep your hips from rotating during the night.
What about if I sleep on my stomach?
This is generally accepted to be the least healthy way to sleep. When you sleep in this position your head is turned and your neck is twisted, which is bad for the spine.
Sleeping on your stomach flattens out your natural curves and may lead to lower back ache in the morning. Additionally, your organs receive additional pressure and this can limit air intake through the lungs.
Tips for getting a good nights sleep:
Regardless of how you sleep, it is important to be mindful of your neck and spine.
Having your neck stretched or compacted can affect your breathing and cause neck problems. Be sure that your neck is supported in a straight, forward looking position. This is almost impossible to do while sleeping on your stomach.
For stomach sleepers, one option to get a better nights sleep is to turn a pillow length wise and to lay against it. This helps transition you from sleeping fully on your front to a more side lying position.
Although many of us wake up in different positions to how we fell asleep, it is important to find a position that is both comfortable and not doing us harm. Talk to your chiropractor about any problems that you are having as a good night’s sleep is vital for health and well being.