Correcting Your Sleep Position to Prevent Back Pain

In movies, we usually see the main characters wake up looking and feeling fresh. They open their eyes, bright with hope and energy for a new day. We see them get out of bed flawlessly after a quick stretch and yawn. In real life, we all know that this isn’t the case for everyone.

For most of us, back pain is the reality we wake up to every day. People look for Zeeland chiropractic care for back pain for this exact reason. Unsurprisingly, the way you lay in bed while sleeping has a direct effect on your back.

Being a stomach-sleeper makes you more at risk of getting back issues. If you experience frequent back pains, your spine might thank you if you start laying on your back. 

But before we talk more about why you should change your sleeping position, let’s discuss some vital information about back pain.


What Are the Symptoms of Back Pain?

Unlike other ailments or illnesses, people with back pain usually share the same symptoms. When you ask someone with recurrent back pain what it feels like, you might be surprised. Backaches are more than just sharp pains. 

People with back pain may also experience these symptoms:

  • Dull, lingering pain that extends in the spine area down to the back of the legs
  • Stiffness in the neck area, down to the lower back
  • Difficulty in standing up or sitting for long periods

To learn more about the connection between head and neck injuries and low back pain, download our complimentary e-book, Natural and Drug-Free Ways to End Your Low Back Pain below.

Who Are at Risk for Back Pain?

Back pain is a widespread symptom that can affect anyone regardless of age and gender. It’s so prevalent that about 80% of adults will experience back pain at least once in their life. 

People who usually engage in activities that require them to stay in a position for a long time are at risk of back pain. You can also be at risk of back pain if you frequently participate in activities that call for repetitive movements, such as lifting weights, rowing, or golfing.


What Causes Back Pain?

Often, people who seek Zeeland chiropractic care for back pain ask about the usual causes of this condition. Spine experts believe that the root of back pain lies in the degeneration of the discs found between the spinal bones. 

These spinal discs serve as cushions that allow flexibility to support some movement in the spine. Degeneration is a regular occurrence that comes with age-- this why older people experience back pain more than younger ones. 

However, several factors can accelerate the degeneration process of these spinal discs. To name a few, these can increase the rate of disc degeneration:

  • Sleeping on your back
  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Car accidents
  • Sporting injuries
  • Excessive muscle strain
  • Dehydration
  • Smoking cigarettes or vaping
  • Poor posture
  • Misalignments in the spine


Why is Sleeping on Your Stomach the Worst for Your Back Pain?

Certain sleeping positions can lead to back pain, but we will talk about the worst one—sleeping on your belly. Some people have trouble sleeping if they can’t find the “just right” position to rest their heads, torso, and legs. Many of these individuals prefer sleeping on their stomachs, not knowing that it can cause back pain when they wake up.

If you are a stomach sleeper, chances are you tend to place excess tension on your spine. When you sleep on your belly, you will likely keep your neck turned to the side the whole night so that you can breathe. 

This position can strain your neck's bones and muscles, leading to stiffness and painful sensations. This pain may radiate down to your back and become chronic if you do not correct your sleeping posture.


Why is Sleeping on Your Side Good for Your Back Pain?

Sleeping on your side is better for your back than sleeping on your stomach. If you experience lower back pain, try sleeping on your side with your knees bent. 

You can also place a pillow between your knees for extra support. The pillow can also prevent you from switching to the position where you sleep on your belly. When you sleep on your side, adjust the height difference between your neck and shoulders by resting your head on a firmer pillow.


Why is Sleeping on Your Back the Best for Your Back Pain?

When people looking for Zeeland chiropractic care for back pain inquire about the best sleeping position for back pain, we confidently answer: “sleeping on your back.”

This sleeping position maintains the natural curve of the spine and the neck, which means less tension and strain. A practical method to train your body to sleep on your back is to fall asleep in this position.

To make this sleeping position even better, placing a pillow behind your knees can promote better blood flow in the body and further reduce the pressure in the lower back. For your head, use a flat or soft pillow as an extra cushion.


Get Better Sleep with These Tips

Sleeping soundly through the night can be considered a luxury when you have back pain. If you notice in the previous sections of this article, the key to reducing back pain is to keep the spine’s natural alignment when sleeping. 

You can also include the following tips to your night routine for better sleep:

  • Take a warm, relaxing shower (or a bath) at night to relax your muscles and tissues.
  • Drink chamomile tea for relaxation.
  • Diffuse some lavender or chamomile oil before bedtime.
  • Use heating pads on your neck, back, and shoulders to reduce pain.


Get Natural Relief from Back Pain with Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care

As mentioned earlier, misalignments can accelerate the degeneration of the discs in your spine. The upper cervical spine, consisting of the atlas (C1 vertebra) and the axis (C2 vertebra), are prone to misaligning.

Upper cervical chiropractic care is a natural, proven method that can correct the misalignment. Hence, it can help you alleviate back pain and some of its accompanying symptoms, including stiffness. Upper cervical chiropractors, like Dr. Dombroski, use a gentle yet precise method to correct the misalignment in your neck to encourage sustainable healing and long-lasting relief from your back pain.

If you are looking for Zeeland chiropractic care for back pain, visit us here at Balanced Health Chiropractic Center of West Michigan. Call us at (616) 772-9255 or fill out this contact form to set a consult with Dr. Dombroski.

To schedule a consultation with the Balanced Health Chiropractic Center clinic, call (616) 772-9255 or just click the button below.

If you are outside of the local area you can find an Upper Cervical Doctor near you at

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What makes our center really special is that we are among the few who actually specialize in the NUCCA technique, which is gaining momentum in the industry, and it is becoming a highly recognized standard.
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Balanced Health Chiropractic Center - Zeeland

300 South State Street #4
Zeeland, MI 49464
(616) 772-9255

Balanced Health Chiropractic Center - Grand Rapids

833 Kenmoor, Ste C
Grand Rapids, MI
(616) 333-2322


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