Waking Up With Aches And Pains? Avoid Sleeping In This Position

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Are you experiencing aches and pains in your body every morning? Maybe your lower back is tight or, your neck or shoulder feels like you “slept on it wrong.” If this is happening to you, chances are you are overworking muscles when your body should be at rest.

Sleep is supposed be a state that heals. You should feel completely at ease and relaxed while your body repairs and recharges itself. Healthy living requires sleep. When your sleep habits are off-kilter, it can lead both to mental and physical health problems.

Even if you have a great pillow, it might not be enough. Your body can be put under stress if you sleep in an uncomfortable position. This can lead to aches, pains, and sometimes injuries such as stiffness, sore shoulders, back pain, and stiff neck. Major injuries, such as spinal compression or a bulging disk, can happen to some people.

How your sleeping position matters

Every day, our bodies take a beating because we put tension on ligaments and muscles, joints, tissues, and other tissue. Our bodies have the opportunity to rest and recover from the night before we wake up the next morning.

But if you are sleeping in a position that keeps tension on certain parts of your body, it can’t recover as it should. As you age, the cartilage which cushions your joints starts to wear.

It is vital to be in a neutral position when you sleep.

Good posture is essential while you sleep

If you’re like me, your mom taught you about the importance of good posture and would often tell you to “stand up straight” or put your “shoulders back.” But good posture while sleeping is just as important as good posture while sitting at your desk.

A good sleeping posture is achieved by aligning your head with your shoulders and hips. This helps to reduce stress. Your goal when you lie down at nights should be to support and maintain your natural curves in your neck, back, and shoulders.

This is the position you should be sleeping in

If you want to avoid waking up with aches and pains–especially back pain–you should be sleeping on your back. If you can, lie down straight and keep your arms in front of your face.

The best way to relieve neck, shoulder, back, and back pain is to sleep on your back. And, you’re less likely to pull a muscle or do something more serious like displace a rib.

Consider putting a small pillow underneath your knees when you sleep on your back.we love this memory foam option from amazon.com). This small lift will adjust to your natural curve and relieve some pressure on your back.

The ideal height for your pillow is one that reduces strain on your neck and keeps your head in neutral. If your pillow is too small or too low, your neck will become strained and your jaw will point toward the ceiling. If your pillow is too high it will cause your chin and neck to move toward your chest.

You will find one that is the right shape and fill like this Therapedic Classic Conture Memory foam Pillow (bedbathandbeyond.com$44.99) will ensure that everything is supported and aligned.


Avoid letting your shoulder touch the bed. This will prevent you from experiencing shoulder pain. To relieve some pressure, rest your arm on a pillow or a folded blanket.

Side-Sleeping works too

Another great sleeping position is to lie on your side, also known as the lateral position. The spine will remain in a neutral position when you sleep on your side. This can help with back, neck, and shoulder pain.

Side-sleeping, however, offers you many options to get your body from a neutral place. Again, a proper head pillow is vitalSo you can keep the natural curve of your neck.

Everlasting Comfort's leg pillow on a white background
(Everlasting Comfort)

Your pillow should be the correct thickness to support your head and neck without straining. It’s also a fantastic idea to put a small pillow (like this one from amazon.com) between your knees. This will keep your hips and spine aligned and prevent your upper leg from pulling forward.

You can reduce pressure on your lower back by stretching out and aligning your thighs with your torso.

You should avoid the fetal position. The extreme curvature in the spine can cause serious discomfort in the neck and back. Breathing problems can also be caused by sleeping in the fetal position.

Avoid Sleeping On Your Stomach

Your stomach is the worst sleeping position. This position can cause pressure on your neck, lower back, and neck for a long time. You may also experience more sleeplessness, tossing and turning, and restlessness.

Also, it is a bad idea if you sleep with your arm raised above your head or on the shoulder. This can lead to painful injuries.

The Takeaway

You don’t have to wake up every morning with aches and pains. It is possible to get the right sleep position and allow your body and mind to rest and recuperate every night.

If you are experiencing pain and wake up frequently, consider sleeping on your side or back. To find the best position and pillow placement for you, experiment with different positions.

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