Ask a Chiropractor: Tips for Comfy Sleep

by SleePare -

 

According to the National Center on Sleep Disorders Research (NCSDR), sleep-related problems affect 50 to 70 million Americans of all ages and socioeconomic classes. 

A considerable number of people who have experienced any back, spinal, and joint pains have also complained about unhealthy sleep. 

So, there is no doubt that a comfortable and peaceful sleep shields you from pains by letting your body heal and rejuvenate.

Now a question arises—how can you enjoy a therapeutic sleep that improves your physical well-being? 

What’s better than turning to experts for answers! 

This article focuses on suggestions by chiropractors for anyone who wants to get the most from their night snooze. 

They help you understand your body and how you should select a proper sleep surface to suit your needs. 

Chiropractors Suggestions for Comfortable Sleep

Chiropractors suggest the following for an ideal snooze time:

 

1. Improve Your Bedtime Routine

The first advice most chiropractors will give you is to maintain a regular bedtime routine. Try to go to bed and get up at the same time, every day. 

But why so? 

It’s because a consistent sleep routine can solve most of the sleep deficiency disorders by syncing your biological clock with your sleep cycle. This way, your mind gets trained to fall asleep and wake up at specific times. 

No more lying awake in the middle of the night and overthinking stuff!

What can you do? 

When your body wants to sleep and you are forcing yourself to stay awake, it can adversely affect your sleep routine.

To maintain proper sleep hygiene, avoid all-nighters or late-night activities. Keep away from mobile phones, tablets, and other light-emitting gadgets once in bed.

Professor Derk-Jan Dijk of Surrey University’s sleep department says that if you ever find yourself unable to fall asleep, get out of bed and do a 20-minute chore. The moment you feel tired again, hit the sack instantly. 

2. Keep your Spine in a Neutral Position During Sleep

Chiropractors emphasize the need for proper spinal alignment during sleep to avoid long-term backache issues. 

Several studies prove that a little pressure can compress your nerves, even though you may not feel the pain as it’s negligible. 

But that’s more dangerous because it gradually leads to long-term pain risk. Keeping your spine straight can save you from a sore back and neck pain.

What can you do? 

The International Chiropractors Association recommends sleeping in a position that supports the spine in its natural, straight form.

Lying on your side, specifically sleeping on the left side, is best as it supports the spine’s natural curvature. 

Sleeping on your back may keep the spine straight, but it doesn’t help the lumbar curve.

On the other hand, stomach sleeping causes stress on the lower back and forces the head to turn on one side. Changing positions, however, is a better option to avoid muscle stiffness.

3. Choose a Mattress that Suits Your Sleep Style

An appropriate mattress for your body is not only useful for joint pain, but also for reducing the risk of developing permanent backache issues. 

Choosing a new mattress is all about what’s best for you, and what compliments your body type. 

For instance, a soft memory foam mattress might be suitable for one body structure or sleep position, while a firmer coil-based bed may perform well for another.

Professionals at Balanced Chiropractic and Physical Therapy clinic in Virginia, further state that the firmness you opt for boils down to your sleep position preferences. 

It will help you determine whether your bed should be more back centric or more supportive for curves.

What can you do? 

Improper mattress firmness increases pressure points in your joints and lower back. Mattress experts encourage consumers to test their future mattresses in a showroom before buying. 

Try it for at least 15 minutes so you can understand its various features such as support, bounce, and comfort level.

Additionally, you should change your mattress every 7 to 10 years, especially if you feel dips in the surface. So be mindful of the drop in your mattress quality. 

4. Adjust your Meal Timing and Limit Caffeinated Drinks

Difficulty in falling asleep at night is directly related to your meal timings and coffee intake. Skipping dinner is an unhealthy practice, and eating just before going to bed is troublesome too. 

Caffeinated drinks before bedtime are a big no-no. Caffeine tends to keep your brain awake and doesn’t let you fall asleep. 

Too much coffee and tea can disturb and hamper your ability to go to sleep quickly.

What can you do? 

Have your meals at least one hour before going to bed. Overeating at night may cause acidity and indigestion as well.

 A balanced diet plan – and most importantly, an appropriate diet helps you sleep better and wake up refreshed. Protein intake is preferred before rest as it’s helpful for the metabolism. 

However, you should avoid carbohydrates as you need to avoid instant energy as you’re trying to sleep.

5. Exercise Promotes Better Sleep

Exercise improves your sleep quality and duration. People who exercise regularly tend to sleep better. 

Physical activity increases the non-REM (Rapid Eye Movement) deep sleep stage of a person. It’s the most restorative phase for your muscles and blood vessels. 

 Exercise has another indirect yet pleasant effect on sleep. It can reduce stress and anxiety. 

Running, stretching, and yoga are exceptional in lowering stress levels and thus, help you sleep better.

What can you do?  

The American Heart Association recommends at least 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity aerobic activity, or 75 minutes per week of vigorous aerobic exercise – or a combination of both preferably spread throughout the week.

6. When in Doubt, Consult a Chiropractor

If after all these suggestions you still can’t sleep well at night or have pain issues, you can consult a chiropractor or a sleep specialist to get to the bottom of the problem. 

By asking questions about your medical history, daily schedule, sleep habits, and maybe a physical examination, chiropractors can refer you to a sleep specialist if they suspect a disorder. 

Once appropriately diagnosed, the chiropractor coordinates with your sleep specialist for a holistic treatment plan. They will also give you advice on how to improve sleep posture and find a good mattress design and firmness

Chiropractic suggestions, as discussed above in detail, can help you train yourself to sleep better and avoid any long-term neck or back pains. 

Nourishing sleep is only possible if you adopt healthy habits and modify your lifestyle.