When you consider just how important sleep is to good health, to go without being able to sleep because of pain will cripple your world, your physical being, mental health, and emotional state. It might surprise you to know that sleep posture is not taught as having any influence on one’s health. As a Chiropractor I have been taught the proper biomechanics when it comes to standing, sitting, and lifting but there is only a few comments thrown around about sleep posture. What happens to the body when you lie down to sleep in the horizontal position?
Most people are sleeping about 35% less than they use to. Research has shown than more than 100 million people in America are having trouble sleeping. 70% of those are suffering from pain related sleeplessness. 22% are suffering from some kind of chronic insomnia that they are taking or consider taking some kind of sleep aid to help them sleep on a regular basis.
Of course, there are more serious issues like sleep apnea, narcolepsy, and sleep deprivation. Many of these cases go undiagnosed, mistreated or untreated. Do you know that there is more than 60 million prescriptions written for sleep deprived conditions and yet it still does not address the underlying cause. One more thing about these sleep medications I think you should know. There are studies out there that show that these drugs actually prevent the brain from effectively going through the necessary sleep cycles.
Here are some things that will help support and restore a better sleep experience. You have seen the mattress commercials showing you that a properly supported spinal column will go a long ways towards a good nights rest. What they show is a spine that is without kinks, twists, alterations, and other malpositions that are the aggravates to being able to even get to sleep or find a comfortable sleep position.
During sleep our body goes into a healing and restoration mode. This is the time when our bodies will restlessly seek a comfortable position to rest in. It may be because circulation is cut off and the tossing and turning is your bodies effort to relieve pressure and get the rest it needs.
When you move, you are exiting the sleeping stages 3 & 4. These sleeping stages are known as the delta sleep. Whether you realize it or not, when you move up to stage 1 it fragments the sleep quality and lowers the effectiveness of sleep itself. It robs the sleeper of the time the brain needs to repair the body, consolidate and archive memories, and regenerate the immune system.
Let’s not forget that the environment is another component like the noise level, light, temperature and air quality. Did you know that the materials in beds, that includes your sheets, pillows, mattresses all play a part in your health. The materials that make up the bed and bedding are often made with synthetic materials and flame retardants that give off harmful fumes. Some of these gasses are volatile compounds like heavy metals, known carcinogens that are linked to several diseases. Did you know that a lot of theses synthetic foams actually degrade rapidly with use. So a mattress that use to support and comfort you within in a couple of years can be the contributor to poor sleep, improper back support and pain. Every human body carries more weight in the hips and torso. If the sleep surface doesn’t support it, your back will feel it. May I suggest getting the firmest bed possible. It is ok to top it with the pillow top for comfort but firmness is a must.
Sleep is a $40 billions per year industry. So all those who can provide so needed sleep improvements services are all appreciated by those suffering. Medical doctors prescribe sleeping pills that help in the short term but do not address the problem. Let me offer my services. I will check your biomechanical body posture and joint positioning for function and pain. One of the greatest compliments I can receive from a patient is “I slept all night without any pain!!!”