8 Tips to Avoid Neck Pain After Sleeping
Neck pain is among the four most common pains reported by American adults. This pain can vary from soreness to unbelievable discomfort.
No matter how you would describe the neck pain you're feeling, if most of your pain comes on after sleeping, there are simple ways that you can improve your situation. Making sleeping adjustments and lifestyle changes can steeply reduce or even eliminate neck pain after sleeping. If you're interested in knowing what type of actions can have the biggest impact on your comfort, keep reading!
1. Pick Up a New Pillow
One of the easiest things that you can try to improve your neck pain after sleeping is picking up a new pillow. Since your head and neck rest on a pillow for most of the evening, having a pillow that better supports your neck can single-handedly revolutionize your sleep.
While everyone's needs are different, we recommend looking into memory foam if you think that you'd benefit from a firmer pillow or a duck-feather pillow if softness seems more appropriate.
2. Invest in a New Mattress
While more expensive than a pillow, investing in a new mattress could be helpful to your neck if you're finding that a new pillow isn't getting the job done.
Your upper back and neck are closely related when it comes to comfort. Consequently, if you purchase a mattress that provides your back with more comfort and support, your neck will likely reap the benefits.
There are several, affordable mattresses that sport different technologies suited to people with different sleeping needs. This article is a good resource to help you understand your options.
3. Adjust Your Sleeping Position
Side-sleepers may find that they experience more neck pain than those that sleep on their backs. Stomach sleepers might also find themselves disproportionately affected by neck pain after sleeping since it requires that your neck be turned to its side all night.
While it may seem uncomfortable at first, if you're a side or stomach sleeper, experiment with sleeping on your back. With some practice, back sleeping may become more comfortable and could significantly improve your comfort in the morning.
4. Stretch Before Bed
The more tense your muscles are before bed, the higher the chance that you'll have of experiencing soreness. That's why some medical professionals recommend stretching before bed to not only reduce chances of pain but also improve your ability to fall asleep.
If you've never experimented with routine stretching before, consider looking up guides online to see which stretches might be most effective in helping neck pain. You might also consider taking the time to find the best chiropractor for neck pain near you who can offer more personalized stretching instructions.
5. Work on Your Posture
Posture has a significant effect on neck and upper back pain. Because of that, it can behoove you to improve the way that you sit and stand.
Walking with your chin up and shoulders back is a great place to start on your posture improvement journey. If you find it difficult to stay disciplined with your posture, there are tools that you can invest in which can assist in your efforts.
6. Experiment With Hot and Cold Therapy
Everyone from physical therapy patients to professional athletes leverage hot and cold therapy to relax and eliminate muscle pain. The trick is to find a balance between the two which a physician can assist with.
For a simple means of delivering hot and cold therapy to your neck, consider picking up products like IcyHot which come in pads and balms. There are also off-brand versions of IcyHot products that you can find online for less money.
7. Improve Your Sleep Routine
Given that neck pain can prevent you from getting sleep, it might seem counter-intuitive for us to suggest sleeping better as a means of reducing neck pain. The truth is though that the better you sleep, the less tossing and turning you'll experience which can reduce your risk of neck pain after sleeping.
Taking sleep aids that you can find at drug stores or via a physician's prescription may be able to help you get on a better sleep cycle. There are also natural means of improving your sleep like meditation which a lot of people find success with.
You can experiment with mindfulness meditation for free via UCLA's free guided sessions.
8. Speak With a Professional
At the end of the day, no amount of blog content is going to be as effective as talking to a doctor. A qualified physician can take a look at your neck problems and prescribe treatments that are tailor-made for you. They can also investigate to see if your chronic pain is a result of muscle trauma that requires a deeper means of intervention.
Neck Pain After Sleeping Doesn't Have to Be the Norm for Your Life
When you've lived with neck pain after sleeping for years, it's easy to resign yourself to managing your pain for the rest of your life. We're here to tell you that you should break away from that resignation and instead, do everything that you can to improve your well-being.
Any one of the suggestions that we've given you can have a profound impact on the quality of your life. Explore them with the help of your doctor and know that we wish you the best in arriving upon a solution that works for you.
For additional excellent write-ups on all things related to health, take a deep dive into more of the blog content on our site!