Some of our patients here at Austin Texas’ TexStar Chiropractic testify that their back pain tends to peak at bedtime. They are often perplexed because it seems logical that back pain would be worse during the day when you are straining your back’s condition during the day’s normal daily movements. Today we offer the insights of our friends at Spine-Health to explain the common causes for bedtime back pain and what you can do about it.
Why is pain sometimes worse at bedtime?
During the day, you are distracted by any number of things. Work, kids, and so much more keep your mind occupied from the time you wake up until the time you are ready for bed. But when you lie down to sleep, you are deprived of many of these distractions. So then, it is easier to focus on your pain.
Additionally, your pain levels may be worse at night due to factors like poor posture and excessive sitting.
Minimizing bedtime pain
No single treatment works for everyone, but any of the following methods may help minimize your bedtime pain:
- Visualization. In your mind's eye, try picturing a relaxing scene such as gentle waves rolling onto a beach. You can try counting the waves as you slowly drift off to sleep.
- Deep breathing. You can practice deep breathing in any number of ways, but to begin simply inhale until the count of 4, and then exhale for the same amount of time.
- Heat therapy. A disposable heat wrap can deliver pain-relief over the course of several hours to help you fall asleep.
- Dissociation. This technique involves separating your pain from the rest of your body. For example, you can visualize your pain sitting on your dresser, and you can tell it to remain there for the night.
What to do if the pain won't stop
If the above strategies fail to bring you enough relief from your pain so that you can fall asleep, make sure to schedule an appointment with Dr. Henry here at Austin’s TexStar Chiropractic. He can review your sleep habits, and recommend proven courses of action to maximize your ability to sleep normally.
Additionally, your doctor may recommend other pain relief options, which could be combinations of spinal decompression, stretching, massage therapy, and low-impact aerobic exercise, and painless cold laser therapy to eliminate your back pain.
We this advice helps you find relief from your bedtime pain so you can wake up feeling rested and ready for your day.