What is the Best Way to Sleep With Lower Back Pain?

best way to sleep with lower back pain

You cannot tell what’s worse – to have lower back pain that gets worse after each night spent in bed or to have a poor sleeping posture that leads to terrible backache in the morning. Either way, it’s almost certain you will be in a bad mood that will probably stay with you for the rest of the day.

The fact is, many people suffer from this inconvenience, from a dull pressure in a recess at the bottom of the back that can make you flinch and shiver while trying to move or get out of the bed. Experts say this is a common consequence after a long period of time you spend resting in one position, which also leads to decreased blood flow. 

The truth is, this pain usually fades during a couple of hours, but some people experience it most common than others because of the stress, bad sleeping position, or some medical condition. So in order to change that outcome, we will offer you some advice on how to get rid of back pain after sleeping.

back hurts when sleepingCauses of Morning Back Pain

There can be many causes of lower back pain. First of all, it’s an inadequate sleeping position that can put significant pressure on your spine. For example, if you have a habit of lying on your stomach, the unnatural position of your back will make you feel the pain in this area for sure. Also, the low quality of the mattress you are spending the nights on can be the cause of the problem as well.

Pregnancy often leads to back pain – it’s one of the things most women face during those nine months. That’s because of the huge strain on lower back muscles or the fact ladies are carrying a great weight in their stomach that makes them maintain in the position that’s not quite comfortable. 

There are also people with some kind of condition, like degenerative disc disease that comes with age. Thanks to that, older people are having trouble getting out of bed without some help. 

How to Relieve Lower Back Pain While Sleeping

If you are wondering how to sleep with back pain, or more precisely, how to relieve yourself from that unwanted effect, we advise you to make some changes when it comes to your sleeping posture. Whether you are a back, side, or stomach sleeper, there are some tips and tricks that should be helpful.

Sleep on the Back With Knee Support

It’s a well-known fact that lying on the back is the best possible sleeping position for our body, since that way, our whole weight is evenly distributed. If you spend the night like this, you will minimize the pressure points and provide yourself with good alignment. But, fully extended legs will leave some space between your lower back and the mattress, which may cause a certain amount of pain in this area in the morning. 

To avoid that, try putting a pillow under your knees. That little trick will create additional support to your back and help maintain the natural curve of the spine. Also, for additional comfort, you can do the same thing wherever you find a gap between you and the bed you are lying on. But don’t forget that mattress for back sleepers is a must in this case.

how should i sleep with lower back pain

Sleep on Your Side With a Pillow Between Your Knees

Many people love spending the night on their side. But the spin won’t be in its natural position, and because of that, you may feel some discomfort in your lower back area. In order to prevent this, first, make sure you are using a mattress for side sleepers. It will provide you with a good night’s rest without any pain in your shoulders in the morning.

Then, take a pillow and place it between your knees. The upper leg will be higher that way, which will make your hips, spine, and pelvis aligned perfectly. Just don’t forget to support your head and neck with another pillow, not too high, but not too low either. If you find your upper arm hanging unnaturally, take the third pillow and hug it the way it comes close to your chest and stomach. It should add additional support to your back. This might be the best way to sleep with lower back pain, at least if you are a stubborn side sleeper.

Sleep on Your Side in the Fetal Position

how to sleep to relieve back painLower back pain sleeping can be exhausting. You will find yourself in a situation where you wake up every day feeling broken and tired. So here is another suggestion if you are a side sleeper. Lay in the bed and easily roll over to your side. Make sure you have a comfortable pillow under your head. Then draw your knees up towards the chest, so that back gets into the relatively straight position.

This fetal locus will be a great help for people who suffer from a herniated disc. The curled-up position of your body may bring you pain relief and provide you with a good night’s rest. It’s proven to be very practical because lying like that, on the side, with knees close to the chest, can reduce bending of the spine. Having a mattress for back pain can also be very helpful. 

Sleep on the Front With the Head Face Down

People who like sleeping on the front, on their stomach, know that it almost always has it’s consequences. Your neck will most likely be all stiff and sorrow each morning because your head will be in one position the whole night. It’s unnatural, and it will twist your spine and create unnecessary stress on the neck, back, and shoulders. On the other hand, this way, your lower back will probably be sore tomorrow because the spine isn’t aligned, there’s a big deviation of the back.

To avoid this, you should try lying with your face down, but in a specific way, with a tightly rolled-up towel or a firm pillow placed under your forehead. That way, you will be able to breathe, and your neck and spine will be in the ideal position.

Sleep on the Front With Pillow Under the Stomach

Many experts agree that spending the night in front of your body is the worst thing you can do for yourself. A stiff neck is definitely one of the reasons, but there’s also present a certain amount of back pain after sleeping. If you struggle with changing the position, which would be ideal, you can tray with a simple trick. The thing is, with this setting, your lower back will be bent significantly, and too far below from the level of the spine.

You should take a pillow and place it underneath your hips and abdomen so that midsection of your body can be placed higher, in perfect balance with your back. Your head should also have pillow support underneath, but it’s up to you if you want to move it on a side or sleep with your face down. The mattress for stomach sleepers is a must, so don’t forget about that.

What to Look for in a Mattress?

We are pretty sure you don’t want to wake up every morning with a pain in your back, so the first step is to find the best mattress that will provide you with adequate support. The one you are looking for needs to be high-quality made, with the construction that can relieve all pressure points, but at the same time, it has to be super comfortable.

Some research has shown that medium-firm mattresses are the best for people with lower back pain, although some claim those that are completely firm will do a better job. But the truth is, the shape of our body, it’s weight, and some other proportions are dictating the rules. Therefore women with wider hips are feeling better while sleeping on softer ground, while those with slim hips mostly choose the firm bed

Have in mind that whatever type of mattress you pick in the end, you will need to replace it after a maximum of ten years. After that period, it simply won’t do the work properly.

sleeping with lower back pain

What to Look for in a Pillow?

There are a couple of ways to sleep with lower back pain, but each one points out how important it is to maintain your head and neck well supported. In order to do that, you will need a good quality pillow that has the ability to provide you with a natural and aligned posture

The back sleepers should have a thinner pillow because raising the head too much might cause a strain on the back, while side sleepers need to purchase thicker ones that could fill the space between the person’s neck and the mattress they are laying on. The memory foam pillows are probably the best for these people, since they are firm, but can mold to the shape of the body perfectly.

There are pillows specially designed for stomach sleepers, for their hips actually, as well as those for forehead if you decide to sleep with your face down. But remember – whichever you choose as the best option, you will have to replace them after 12 to 18 months.

Other Sleep Tips

It’s a fact that pain in the lower back, actually any kind of pain, can disrupt your sleep. But you shouldn’t try to compensate that by taking a nap during the day. No! You need to maintain your normal sleep schedule with a consistent bedtime. That means you should go to bed every day at the same time. The preparation period for nights rest is also of great importance, so here and some of the tips you should apply. Avoid exercising and drinking caffeine in the evening, read a book and eliminate electronic screens at least two hours before you plan to go to bed, and find another way of becoming and maintaining relaxed.


You started reading this text, wondering how to relieve lower back pain while sleeping. And now you know. We shared all our wisdom and little tricks. You should try all those and see if you feel better after some time. But don’t forget about the basics – good and balanced life, healthy eating, physical activity, and we will be free to add, as a fourth point – high-quality mattress. It’s time to start taking care of yourself in all possible ways, and that means eliminating all the factors due to which you are deprived of good rest. Of course, if you take all the measures and the pain is still there, then you should go and see the doctor. But don’t panic, more people than you know are sharing this agony of constantly waking up feeling broken and in pain. We are almost sure this set of advice we prepared for you is hiding the solution to your problem.



How should you sleep if you have lower back pain? – https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/