Sleep is important for the body to heal, for recovery, and for giving you energy throughout the day. Sleep helps build resistance to sickness and maintains your immune system to ensure optimal health. When you don’t sleep well, your tiredness can exacerbate health issues and disorders.
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), lack of sleep is a public health problem in the United States and can contribute to increased risks of chronic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, depression and cancer, while also reducing overall quality of life. About a third of adults in the U.S. report that they usually get less than the recommended 7+ hours of sleep every night. Lack of sleep causes daytime drowsiness, which decreases productivity and success at work and even in relationships, in addition to playing a major role in car accidents and other dangerous incidents. Sleep disorders can increase the risk of other health problems, such as chronic diseases.
What Causes Sleep Disorders And Problems?
Sleep problems can be caused by many different factors, including physical, environmental, and psychological issues. Many sleep problems are caused by pain stemming from musculoskeletal issues and discomfort, such as arthritis or spine-rated pain, which can disrupt sleep and make you restless. These conditions and problems with sleep become much more common with age.
Additionally, stressors such as difficulty in your work or home life, maintaining a bad sleep schedule, too much screen time on electronics or a television, bad or poorly adjusted sleeping position, environmental conditions in your home or climate, and mental and physical health disorders can all contribute to sleep disorders and problems. A day spent standing or sitting uncomfortably at work followed by an evening slumped in front of the television or bent over a computer screen only heightens sleep issues and discomfort.
Treatment For Sleep Problems
Could be that a part of your body is sore or in discomfort, or maybe you aren’t tired enough to fall asleep. Physical exercises along with targeted stretching and exercises to promote healthy movement can help you rest your head a little easier.
Some people find meditation to be helpful in calming them down and clearing their minds in preparation for sleep.
Keeping with your body’s natural rhythm can help you fall asleep at a regular time each night and wake up effortlessly. You may have difficulty sleeping if you are sleeping intermittently or going to sleep at different times that are not keeping with your body’s natural rhythm of sleeping from dusk until dawn.
Cut Out Electronics
Try turning on the blue light screen filter on your cell phone or cutting TV time short an hour or two before bedtime. Reducing the extra stimuli can help prepare you for bed and eliminate the strain on your eyes.
Replace Your Mattress
You could be having difficulty sleeping because of your current sleeping environment or mattress. You may need a firmer or softer mattress or one that better supports your body to provide adequate support for a restful night’s sleep.
Switch Or Discontinue Medications
Although medications are prescribed for specific treatments to make individuals get better and promote health, they may also have unintended consequences, such as disrupted sleep or insomnia. If your medication has a documented side-effect of sleep issues, consider talking to the prescribing doctor about an alternative medication without sleep-disrupting side-effects.
Try white noise
Your sleep issues could be from a bad sleep environment. IF you are in a new space or dealing with loud noise or a too-quiet environment, consider utilizing a white noise machine or earplugs to reduce the impact of external stimuli and help you fall asleep and stay asleep.
Get Physical Therapy
Physical therapy can help reduce any spinal pressure or discomfort created by a bad sleeping position, relieve any pain that could be keeping you up at night. Back pain, in addition to hip and side pain, is often cited as the primary cause of sleep issues.
How Can Physical Therapy Help With Sleep?
Physical therapy is focused on treating the whole patient, including any issues that may be causing sleep disorders and problems. Routine spinal adjustments ensure nerve impingements are relieved and joints remain properly aligned, which can reduce and even eliminate pain and improve circulation and nerve signaling.
Increased circulation promotes more rapid tissue healing, and when combined with physical therapy and therapeutic massage, tension and muscle knots are released–relieving headaches, neck pain, back pain, and correcting other nerve issues like sciatica and cervical radiculopathy. A skilled physical therapist can evaluate a patient’s spine and joints to provide recommendations for simple lifestyle changes that will help avoid back and neck pain to correct and eliminate future sleep problems.
Get A Better Night’s Rest
If you’ve tried environmental and behavioral suggestions for getting better sleep and haven’t seen the result, your problem likely goes beyond tiredness and being unable to fall asleep. Physical conditional and pain are the leading factor in for restlessness and sleep problems. If you’re suffering from pain or discomfort that is causing a sleep disorder or problem getting to sleep at night, physical therapy can provide you with relief.
From spinal alignment and adjustments to getting to the root of your back, neck, and shoulder pain, physical therapists can evaluate the source of your problem and provide treatment to alleviate pain and create a healthy sleep pattern. Contact phyxMe Physical Therapy to make an appointment for a free consultation to relieve the pain and discomfort keeping you from a good night’s rest.
Don’t just take our word for it, check out what our physical therapy patients have to say about regaining their sleep.
“I initially visited because I was having upper and lower back pain that was preventing me from sleeping through the night… I no longer have any trouble sleeping and my back pain only seems to flare up when I am traveling for an extended period of time which is a huge improvement from the daily pain I was initially experiencing.” – Catherine G.
“Tired of being in pain, I went religiously to his office 3-4 times a week. After a month I noticed I was walking better, bending, and sleeping better then I’d slept in years.” –Lauren C.
“It was not until Dr. Jacobazzi came along that I finally received a concrete answer and solution, since then I have been able to feel my hands, and finally my sleep is back to normal.” –Angelica S.
“I’ve gone from intense pain where I could barely sleep or even sit comfortably, to being back functioning normally and 100% pain-free. After three months there have been big improvements in my posture and alignment.” –Kim J.