Backpain and sleep
Backpain and sleep go together for the wrong reasons, Backpain sufferers are almost certain to have problems sleeping, simply because it is so difficult for them to get comfortable. That said, it is essential to get adequate rest, not only because your body needs it, but also because back pain relief is dependent on a relaxation of the muscles around the spine.
The classic back pain advice for many years has been to use a firm bed to eliviate backpain and sleep deprivation. Indeed, sufferers are often advised to place a sheet of plywood beneath their mattress to firm things up. Note that if you do this, the plywood does need to be at least 12mm thick - it is essential that the bed doesn't sag towards the middle. A sheet of ply like this should only be considered as a short term measure, not a solution. It will encourage condensation under your mattress with the likelyhood of mildew developing. A better answer would be to use wood slats which will provide firmness but still allow the mattress to breath.
Given that we spend almost one third of our lives in bed, backpain and sleep loss will have an adverse effect on your life. We do tend to ignore the fact that we probably bought our current bed many years ago - and almost certainly we choose it based as much on cost as anything else. It has probably started to sag now and is certainly not helpful for our backpain or sleep! Perhaps now is the time to consider the purchase of a new one, one which will ease our back pain and give us the deep relaxing sleep which we increasingly need. Being older now, we can use our experience and purchaseing power to buy something which best suits our needs.
If you decide to take this route, don't allow yourself to be pressured by smart sales people. Your money, your back and your well being so give it some thought, try different beds and don't be afraid to walk away if you don't like what's on offer.
Some things you should consider.
Before you set off to your nearest bed superstore, do a little 'research' on the internet. It will almost certainly give you some ideas and it will also give you an indication of likely prices. If you see something you like locally and can honestly tell the salesman that you saw the same thing on the internet for "Only x Pounds", it's remarkable how the price suddenly becomes a little more flexible! Just '' mattresses or beds and go from there............
Types of mattress you might want to compare include the classic/traditional metal sprung ones - springs are available in different strengths to control firmness.
Dunlopillo mattresses - one piece natural latex foam, available in different densities for back pain firmness. One of the best known names and unlikely to disappoint.
Memory foam. Like Teflon and Velcro, this is an offshoot from the space programme. Memory foam mattresses mould to the body but retain the ability to re-form to their original shape - hence 'memory'.
Water beds. These sound exotic to many of us but they were developed for medical purposes and are well proven. They are claimed to mould gently to the bodies shape and one benefit is that the water can be temperature controlled to provide theraputic warmth to the body right through the night. Heat has always been a basic treatment for back pain so they might be worth considering on that basis alone. Forget worries about water leaks - all modern beds come double lined and can be easilly repaired should it ever become necessary.
And while you are treating yourself to a new bed and mattress, why not try a couple of new pillows as well that will help with yoru backpain and sleep loss. New materials are available including memory foams and most new pillows are also Hypoallergenic which can be very helpful if you or your partner suffer from hay fever.
And once you have that super new bed? Generally, the recommedation is to sleep on your side, possibly with a pillow under your knees. Sleeping on your back on a decent mattress helps the spine but may cause snoring with interupted sleep and sore throats, while sleeping face down is generally discouraged. However; truth is that most of us can only sleep in the position we are most used to. Deep sleep is more important that sound theory!
And just to show that not everyone is in agreement about anything to do with backpain, there is a school of thought which says that comfort is everything and whichever bed allows you to sleep is the right one - on the basis that relaxation is what will best treat back pain........
Sleep well and wake up refreshed....
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