A knee wedge pillow for lower back pain puts your body in its ideal position for rest and recovery overnight, leaving you refreshed and ready for tomorrow. After all, no one wants to crawl into bed after a long day of hard work, only to find they can’t get comfortable because of lower back pain. Back pain when sleeping is most often the result of sleeping in the wrong position.
How to stop back pain when sleeping on your back
Let’s face it, most people have tight hip flexors. Whether you have a desk job, are a cyclist, a runner, sit most of the time, or do none of the above, you probably have tight hip flexors.
Tight hip flexors tilt your pelvis forward and cause your lower back to arch. This means, when you lie down flat and have tight hip flexors (like most of us do), there is an arch in your lower back. Lying like this can cause pain and irritation in your lower back and as a physical therapist, I never recommend that any of my patients sleep flat on their back.
By placing a knee wedge pillow for back pain under your legs, you eliminate the anterior tilt of your pelvis. This small change in position flattens your lower back against the bed. When your lower back is flat on the bed, your back muscles relax, and you sleep with your spine in a neutral position.
When you sleep with a knee wedge for back pain and allow your spine to rest in a neutral position overnight, you provide the optimal environment for healing. Our body recovers from the wear and tear of the day while we sleep, and sleeping pain free is an essential part of this process.
How to stop back pain when sleeping on your side
Learning how to stop back pain when sleeping on your side is as simple as learning what areas of your body need support when side sleeping. Just like we learned that to stop back pain when sleeping on your back, it is critical to sleep with a neutral spine, the same principles apply for side sleeping.
When you lie down on your side, you will notice that there is a downward angle from your hip to your knee to your ankle. This downward ankle puts a strain on your lower back and hip muscles all night. This position leads to pain and stiffness in the morning and can contribute to other hip issues like bursitis and IT band syndrome.
For side sleepers, a knee wedge pillow for lower back pain needs go between their knees. It is important that this leg separator pillow be supportive enough that it holds your top leg as close to parallel to the bed as possible. This eliminates muscle tension throughout the hips and lower back, allowing your back to completely relax while you sleep.
Additionally, side sleepers should consider a side sleeper wedge. This small wedge fits in the curve of your waist and prevents your lower back from curving down towards the mattress. Keeping your spine straight while you sleep on your side is an important key to stopping back pain while sleeping on your side.
A knee wedge pillow for lower back pain is a positioning tool that will help stop your back pain at night. Your back deserves a break, and so do you. So reach out and find comfort, because after all, your life is waiting.
-Hillary Blare, Doctor of Physical Therapy