Sleep Hygiene 101: How Better Sleep Can Relieve Back Pain

Sleep Hygiene 101: How Better Sleep Can Relieve Back Pain


Getting quality sleep is critical for physical and mental health. But, many of us struggle to fall asleep or stay asleep. This means we don’t get enough restorative rest, which can help ease pain. For those with back pain (or any discomfort), good sleep is crucial for relieving symptoms.

This guide talks about sleep hygiene and how to get better shut-eye. We’ll discuss how to use your bedroom, what to avoid before bed, meal timing and more!

What is Sleep Hygiene?

Do you know about sleep hygiene? It’s all about habits and practices to help get better sleep. These are sometimes known as “sleep hygiene“. With good sleep hygiene, you can improve the quality of your sleep, reduce fatigue, and enjoy better overall health.

Let’s look at what sleep hygiene is and how it can help with back pain:

Establish a Sleep Routine

Creating a bedtime routine is key for good sleep. Going to sleep and waking up at the same time every day helps your body create a rhythm.

Before bed, relax your body and mind. To do this, read, journal, stretch, or meditate. Don’t watch TV or surf the internet, as this light can disrupt melatonin production.

Avoid stimulating food and drinks two hours before sleep. Don’t drink lots of fluids or eat too much, as feeling uncomfortable or needing to urinate can keep you from falling asleep. Too much caffeine during the day may lead to sleeping issues.

Create a Sleep Environment that is Conducive to Rest

Good sleep hygiene requires a relaxing, restful sleep environment with complete darkness. To improve your sleeping environment, try these steps:

  • Darkness: Block out light with blackout curtains, masking tape, or an eye mask.
  • Temperature: Keep it cool, between 60-67°F (15-19°C). Open windows or use a fan to keep cool.
  • Noise: Keep noise to a minimum. Use ear plugs or sound machines. Turn off televisions, cell phones and video games.
  • Airflow: Leave windows open slightly. Better air flow can reduce allergens during winter.

Avoid Stimulants Before Bed

Avoid stimulants like caffeine and nicotine for 4-6 hours before bedtime. These can make a person alert and energized, instead of relaxed and sleepy. Don’t drink caffeinated beverages or take energy drinks or pre-workout supplements close to bedtime. Your body may start to associate alertness with the time of day, making it hard to sleep.

How Sleep Hygiene Can Help Relieve Back Pain

Sleep hygiene is often neglected when it comes to relieving back pain. But, disrupted sleep affects your body’s healing power. Implement simple sleep hygiene habits to reduce back pain symptoms!

Know how better sleep can help ease back pain? Let’s discuss!

Reduce Stress and Anxiety

The goal of sleep hygiene is to better your sleep and lower stress. This can help with learning, memory and managing emotions. Doing good sleep hygiene has lots of advantages in decreasing back pain.

Set up a bedtime routine that gets your body and mind ready for rest. Before you plan to go to sleep, do calming activities like taking a warm bath, listening to calming music, reading or doing light stretching. Turning off electronics an hour before bed helps the mind stay peaceful so you can sleep well.

Relaxation techniques like meditation or deep breathing exercises can help reduce stress before bed. Stress is connected to both back pain and insomnia, so reducing it can help with both.

Improve Sleep Quality

Poor quality sleep can be damaging to your health and can even contribute to back pain. Uncomfortable mattresses, poor sleep posture, and psychological stress like anxiety and depression can all affect sleep quality. Difficult feelings make it hard for your body to rest and heal. To reduce pain from chronic back problems or medical conditions, sleep hygiene measures must be taken.

These are some steps you can take to improve your sleep hygiene and reduce pain-related symptoms:

  1. Create a cozy sleeping environment: Ensure your mattress is supportive and experiment with bedding materials. Adjust the temperature and humidity in your room. Buy supportive pillows or a special mattress if needed.
  2. Reduce outdoor light and noise before bedtime: Hang blackout curtains or cover the windows with dark clothing. Use a white noise machine or play calming music. This will help you get more restful sleep and reduce the chances of waking up during the night.
  3. Establish soothing pre-sleeping rituals: Set aside 20 minutes before bed for activities such as listening to peaceful music, practicing breathing techniques, and stretching/yoga. These rituals can help relieve tension and induce relaxation before you go to sleep.

Increase Mobility

It may be strange, but movement is key for those who have back pain. Increasing your range of motion and flexibility will help build strength. This will improve your posture, alignment, and mobility.

You can do simple stretches to increase flexibility. An example is the Hamstring Stretch: Step forward with one leg, bend it at a 90-degree angle, and reach for the toes on the bent leg. Another one is the Upper Back Release: Sit up straight in a chair and hug your chest in toward your stomach. Let gravity sink your shoulders away from your ears. Take 3 deep breaths and repeat.

Air Squats are also good. Stand with your feet hip-width apart and arms stretched out. Lower into a squat until your thighs are parallel to the ground. Stand back up and flare your elbows to the side. Do this 10 times.

Being aware of how you move and stretch can help relieve tight muscles caused by postures or sleeping positions. Low impact exercises can help relieve pain by increasing mobility in those tight muscles. This can slowly relieve soreness without worsening injuries.


In the end, improving your sleep can help lessen the symptoms of chronic back pain and even help decrease future odds of acute pain. When we give our bodies the restful sleep they need, we become physically stronger and mentally more awake. Plus, when you feel better, it is simpler to participate in activities that can reduce back pain by making muscles stronger, joints more toned, and flexibility increased.

But, having quality sleep is tough since there are lots of factors that affect our capability to fall asleep and stay asleep. Such as, habits we do right before bedtime, environment like noise and light in the bedroom, health conditions and medicines taken for other illnesses. So, it is vital to do proactive things to control sleeping well each night.

By concentrating on making changes like:

  • Having a comfy bedroom with calming colors and sheets, no electronics or screens;
  • Exercising usually;
  • Having good bedtime habits for calming down;
  • Avoiding stimulants late in the day or big meals just before sleep;
  • Managing underlying conditions if needed;
  • Allowing enough time to get into deep REM cycles before morning wake-up calls.

will all assist greatly to get the needed amount of quality restful sleep every night.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How does sleep hygiene relate to back pain relief?

Sleep hygiene is the practice of promoting good sleep habits for overall health and well-being, including relieving back pain. Improper sleep habits can exacerbate back pain, while good sleep habits can alleviate it.

2. What are some good sleep hygiene practices?

Good sleep hygiene practices include maintaining a regular sleep schedule, creating a comfortable sleep environment, avoiding caffeine and nicotine before bed, engaging in relaxing activities before bed, and avoiding electronics in the bedroom.

3. Can sleeping on the wrong mattress cause back pain?

Yes, sleeping on a mattress that doesn’t provide proper support can cause or worsen back pain. It’s important to choose a mattress that supports your spinal alignment and provides enough cushioning for comfort.

4. Does exercise help with back pain relief and sleep hygiene?

Yes, exercise can help with both back pain relief and sleep hygiene. Regular exercise can strengthen and stretch muscles, improve spinal alignment, reduce stress levels, and promote better sleep.

5. How does stress impact sleep hygiene and back pain?

Stress can negatively impact sleep hygiene and worsen back pain. Chronic stress can cause muscle tension and inflammation, making back pain worse, while also interfering with good sleep habits.

6. When should I see a doctor for my back pain?

You should see a doctor if your back pain is severe or persistent, interferes with your daily activities, or is accompanied by other symptoms like numbness or tingling.

the back recovery program by alex larsson
Jane Smith is a natural health enthusiast on a mission to uncover effective methods for achieving pain-free living. Through her personal journey with chronic back pain, she has become well-versed in holistic approaches such as yoga, Pilates, and essential oils.

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