News and Insights

Our clinic blog provides insights and articles that focus on improving your healthcare and wellbeing to help maintain an active lifestyle.

Sleep your way to better health

On average, we spend around a third of our lives sleeping. Our bodies use this time to regenerate and heal, which is vital for mental and physical health and the quality of your waking life, including your productivity, emotional balance, brain and heart health, immune system, creativity, vitality, and even your weight.

Your sleeping pose can have a major impact on your slumber – as well as your overall health! One key aspect of poor sleep quality, which many people do not realise, is that sleeping in awkward positions, may have an adverse impact on your spinal health. It can potentially cause back and neck pain, muscle cramps, fatigue, impaired circulation and heartburn, amongst other adverse symptoms, so protecting your back while lying down is vital.

This would then suggest that modifying your posture in everyday life doesn’t just refer to sitting and standing! As with standing and sitting, the key to correct sleeping posture requires a position that maintains the curve in your lower back and keeps your spine in a neutral position. So, which sleep spot is best? Take a look below from best to worst……

1. On Your Back

Only about 8 percent of adults sleep on their backs and even though it’s not the most popular position, it’s by far the healthiest option. It is generally agreed that sleeping on your back is the best position for spinal health. Sleeping on the back evenly distributes weight across the surface of your body, allowing your head, neck and spine to rest in a neutral position. It can also help reduce pressure and ensure proper alignment of your internal organs. You may choose to place a pillow under your keeps to keep to the natural curves on your spine. The only downside for those snorers amongst you – it can make snoring more severe!

2. On Your Side

Around 15 percent of people choose to sleep on their side (where your torso and legs are relatively straight), but assuming this position incorrectly can possibly result in spinal health issues. If you can’t sleep in any other position, try lying with a slight bend in your knees and consider putting a pillow between your knees so that your pelvis stays in a neutral position. This can reduce the pressure placed on the spine and provide alignment.

3. In the Foetal Position

Resting in a foetal position (where you’re on your side and your torso is hunched and your knees are bent) is the chosen position for 41 percent of people, but it can restrict breathing in your diaphragm, if curled too tight. This position can also leave you feeling a bit achy in the morning, particularly if you have arthritis in your joints or back. One suggestion would be to straighten out your body as much as possible, instead of tucking your chin into your chest and pulling your knees up high. You can also reduce strain on your hips by placing a pillow between your knees.

4. On Your Stomach

While this is good for easing snoring, it’s bad for pretty much everything else! Seven percent of adults choose this pose, but it can create problems with your spine, since it’s hard to stay in a neutral position. It also places excessive pressure on your neck due to twisting your head and placing strain through your spine. Added to this, stomach sleepers put pressure on their muscles and joints, which could lead to numbness, tingling, aches, and irritated nerves. It’s really is better to try and find another position, but if you must sleep on your stomach, try lying facedown, instead of with your head turned to one side—with your forehead propped up on a pillow to allow room to breathe.

And finally, take care care when turning in bed, as this is the time when your spine can be misaligned during twisting and turning. Move your whole body together and tighten your core. Due to the fact that we lie in the same position for long periods of time, it is advisable to stretch after sleeping.

If you are persistently complaining about any form of back or neck pain and are concerned that it may be caused by your bed, mattress or sleep position, or if you would just like some advice, then please feel free to contact us and one of our osteopaths or physiotherapists will be more than happy to help.

More Insights

Our core services at The Carl Todd Clinics

Sports Massage

Speeding the recovery process and enhancing performance

Sports massage offers a number of benefits both for athletes and for people in everyday life. It can help pain reduction, which is often caused by muscle tension and waste products. The massage techniques used by our therapists work deep into the soft tissues to restore mobility and help speed up recovery.
Find out more

Physiotherapy

People of all ages and activity levels can benefit from physiotherapy

Physiotherapy is a healthcare profession that helps promote a faster recovery with lasting results. Our physiotherapists assist patients in restoring normal function and movement to the body, which in turn, helps reduce pain levels.
Find out more

Osteopathy

Treating back, neck and musculoskeletal pain effectively

Osteopathy can help effectively treat back pain, neck pain and many other musculoskeletal symptoms by understanding the origin of your pain.  Many common physical symptoms can be successfully treated using gentle, manipulative osteopathic techniques, including sciatica, whiplash, headaches caused by neck pain and arthritic pain.
Find out more

Shockwave

Shockwave Therapy can be used to treat a wide variety of musculoskeletal conditions – especially chronic conditions

If you have been suffering from tendon pain in your Achilles, knee, elbow, foot or shoulder for a long period of time and haven’t been able to find relief from other forms of treatment, then this innovative type of treatment may be of benefit.
Find out more

Pilates

Strengthen your muscles & stabilise your core

Pilates is a form of exercise that offers a different way of thinking about your body. It targets the deep postural muscles, which in today’s society are so underused, and works by building strength from the inside out, rebalancing posture and bringing the body into correct alignment.
Find out more

Podiatry

Biomechanical foot and ankle assessments to reduce pain and improve function

Podiatry assesses and corrects problems arising from the function of the feet. Incorrect movement or function of the foot can not only lead to foot and ankle pain but is often the cause of non-specific knee, back and hip pain.
Find out more

Please call either of our clinics to book, or send us an email:

Corsham Clinic: 01249 248392
Swindon Clinic:  01793 978270

How can we help?

Carl Todd Clinics

If your not a member find out more:

Register your interest to become a member