A Well Rested Back

A good night’s sleep can work wonders for us physically and mentally, just as a bad night’s sleep can leave us grumpy and moody in the morning. Choosing the correct bed can make such a difference to sleep as your bed can also be the cause of back pain. Recent research carried out on behalf of the British Chiropractic Association found 30% of those suffering from back or neck pain put their problems down to their sleeping position, mattress and/or pillow.

We spend more than a third of our lives in bed so we need to choose our beds carefully. Not only that, we need to ensure it still offers us what we need as the years go by and as our body shape and strength changes. Here are a few questions to ask yourself to help you decide if a new mattress is necessary: Are you and your partner both getting comfortable, refreshing nights sleep? Can you feel the springs through the mattress? Is the bed more than 10 years old? Has it been used as a trampoline by the children for any length of time?

You’ve decided you need a new mattress, what should you look for? Michelle from Alive for Life Chiropractic offers some advice:
• Hard or soft? There is no right or wrong answer. The best mattress is a supportive one and needs to be right for your build and weight – a 16 stone person may not get the same support as a 10 stone person sleeping on the same mattress.
• What should I look for? When lying on your side, your spine should be parallel to the mattress and should not sag (too soft) or bow (too hard).
• When shopping, narrow your choice to two or three beds. Don’t rush into a decision after only spending 5 minutes lying on a bed, remember to take your time and always shop with your partner. Try the bed out together so you can be sure that it balances your weight – you may find two single mattresses zipped together is an answer. Take a good book and make a relaxing day of it!

Your new bed has arrived, what can you do to help prevent back problems?

  • Choose your pillow so it allows your spine to be a continual straight line – not too high or low.
  • Adopt a sleeping position that creates less physical stress on the back. Avoid sleeping on your stomach and twisting your neck.
  • Don’t stay in one position too long.
  • If your partner is a wriggler, try separate beds for a while as your partner’s movement could aggravate your back condition!
  • Keep hydrated as dehydration can make muscles ache.
  • Take your time in the morning, do some gentle stretches before getting out of bed and avoid bending or sudden or strenuous movements until your back wakes up!

For more information, or if you are still suffering back problems or muscle aches and pains call Alive for Life for an appointment – 0117 9898224.