Sciatica pain is not easy to deal with, and can be especially uncomfortable when it comes to trying to get to sleep.
To date, there are no scientific studies regarding the best way to sleep through the night while suffering from sciatic pain, and generally speaking, there is very little medical education done on the best sleeping positions for chronic sciatic pain. At American Spine, our physicians are dedicated to education and helping patients live the best lives possible. To relieve sciatic pain while sleeping, it's recommended to sleep in positions that relieve pressure on the sciatic nerve.
A harder mattress is recommended over a softer one, and extra pillows can be used to support the head, shoulders and knees. The goal will be to align the neck level with the spine and not above or below it - this can cause neck pain upon waking.
For those able to sleep comfortably on their side, it is recommended to bring the top knee up toward your head, placing a firm pillow or two underneath it to alleviate pressure on the sciatic nerve.
For those unable to sleep comfortably on their side, it is recommended to lie on your back, but place a firm pillow or two under your knees, lifting them above your hips. This position may also relieve pressure on the sciatic nerve, which will lessen pain and make it easier to sleep.
Even if you rotate through different positions as you sleep, try to make sure that you're lying in positions that will best help alleviate pressure on the sciatic nerve.
A warm shower or ice pack on the lower back for 20 minutes before bed may also alleviate pain and make it easier to sleep.
These tips should help with a better night's sleep, but it is still recommended to visit a chronic pain specialist like those at American Spine for treatment of your sciatic nerve pain.
At American Spine, we are dedicated to treating chronic pain and spine conditions. Offering the latest in minimally invasive spine surgery and other effective treatment options, American Spine is the leading pain physician group of California. For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call us at (951)-734-PAIN (7246)
The advice and information contained in this article is for educational purposes only, and is not intended to replace or counter a physician’s advice or judgment. Please always consult your physician before taking any advice learned here or in any other educational medical material.