Hypnos, the Greek God of Sleep can be an irregular visitor. Instead of falling under his nightly spell, back pain and ailments keep us wide awake, yearning for restful sleep. There are solutions to help you fall asleep and stay asleep each night from practicing good sleep hygiene, to propping your body in a sleep-friendly position.
To ease yourself into a regular sleeping pattern, notice to what your body tells you throughout the day. Chances are it needs some time for movement, and time for calm. Including moderate exercise and meditation into a routine are proven to promote sleep quality at night. Artificial light plays tricks on your internal body clock because it makes the brain think it’s really day. An hour before bedtime dim the lights and make effort to avoid the blue light from mobile devices. Low light and darkness make it that much easier to relax. Associating your bedroom as a sanctuary promotes rest and sleep. Never use it for work or study if you don’t have to.
With your sleep hygiene taken care of, is there anything happening in your body that is interfering with the process of falling asleep? Chronic pain to minor colds are disruptive to sleep, their symptoms worse at night time when all the distractions of the day have fallen away. It sounds too simple, however, propping your body up in bed can help overcome a range of sleeping issues. Just by using a bed wedge allows your neck, shoulders, chest and upper back remain elevated throughout the night so your body take advantage of the effects of gravity.
Bed wedges are large, triangular, therapeutic foam pillows that reduce discomfort. Bad Backs currently stock two bed wedges; one has a medium incline, the other a high incline, that can help you achieve the perfect night’s sleep. The bed wedge eases pressure on muscle groups and promotes airflow to your lungs. Propping your back on a bed wedge is beneficial for overcoming a range of sleep disrupting conditions.
Reflux – if you suffer from heartburn, a bed wedge works with gravity to keep stomach acid from re-entering the oesophagus which makes you too uncomfortable for resting.
Colds and Sinus infections – a bed wedge helps air circulate your sinus passages and works with gravity to lower congestion.
Sleep apnoea & Snoring – the bed wedges positions the body on an incline so that air can be breathed in and out without obstruction, therefore reducing snoring and potentially dangerous sleep apnoea.
Medical recovery – after an injury or surgery you would sleep with on an incline in a hospital bed. At home, a bed wedge is the practical alternative. It gives support to the upper torso and assists manage blood flow to the hurt area.
Pregnancy – extra support and elevation and help you feel more comfortable during pregnancy. The bed wedge helps ease back pain that is commonly experienced, and provides extra support for the weight on your tummy.
Back pain – propping the body up on a bed wedge removes pressure on the lumbar and cervical spine. It is good to note that the benefits are strongest when you sleep on your back.
Lower back pain – if your pain is experienced only in the lumbar spine, try placing the bed wedge between the legs to provide support.
Sitting in bed – bed wedges are better than pillows for posture while reading in bed without taking away that much needed feeling of r&r that we all need at the end of a long day. Prop it against the wall or the bed-head with the widest section at the bottom and the tip of the wedge towards the ceiling. Your spine will be straighter and not curved and crumpled like when you stack pillows behind you.
If you’ve never tried it before, a bed wedge might be the difference between achieving deep sleep and tossing and turning; and we all know how much better we feel if we’ve had a full eight hours of z’s.