HomeblogsHealth-and-wellnessDetailed Guide To Switching Your Sleep Position To End Back Pain

Detailed Guide To Switching Your Sleep Position To End Back Pain

Lower back pain is excruciating, and it makes your life miserable. It could be an arduous job for you to deal with back pain, especially at night. With lower back pain, it might be difficult for you to find a suitable sleeping position. If you can’t sleep properly, you may suffer from sleep disorders like sleep arena and so on. Some medications for back pain may also inhibit your sleep.

If you are suffering from lower back pain due to arthritis, stress, bad posture, or any other underlying causes, you must try out some of the best sleeping positions for lower back pain to improve your sleep quality.

Back Pain

Let’s take a look at some of the best sleeping positions for lower back pain.

1. Sleep on your side with a pillow between your knees

If you are uncomfortable while lying flat on your back, you may try to shift to your side.

  • Keep your right or left shoulder flat on the mattress, along with the rest of that side of your body.
  • Now, place a cushion between your knees
  • If you find a gap between your waist and the mattress, you may use a small pillow for additional support.


Whether you are using one or two pillows, you should always sleep on the same side. Sleeping in this position may improve your muscle imbalance and even scoliosis.

 Sleeping on your side alone may not help you to overcome your back pain. You must use a pillow between your knees to alleviate the pain. The pillow will make your hips, pelvis, and spine in a better position.

2. Sleep on your side in the fetal position

If you are suffering from a herniated disc, you can try sleeping on your side curled in a fetal position. Trust us this is the best way to sleep with lower back pain

  • Lie down on your back and then turn over gently onto your side
  • Fold your knees toward your chest and delicately curl your torso toward your knees
  • To prevent imbalances, switch over sides from time to time

Your discs act as cushions between the vertebrae in your spine. Herniation occurs when part of a disc comes out from its normal space. This causes nerve pain, weakness, and so on. Curling your torso into a fetal position widens the space between vertebrae.

3. Sleep on your stomach with a pillow under your abdomen

Many people avoid sleeping on the stomach as it aggravates their back pain. This is because it may add extra pressure or stress to your neck.

But if you are comfortable resting on your stomach, you don’t need to opt for any other position. Instead:

  • Keep a pillow under your pelvis and lower abdomen to release some of the pressure from your back.
  • Depending on the feeling about this position, you may or may not opt for a pillow under your head.


People who are suffering from degenerative disc disease may get benefits from this position (stomach sleeping with a pillow). It will assuage any stress that is placed on the space between your discs.

4. Sleep on your back with a pillow under your knees

Some people prefer to sleep on their back to get rid of back pain.

  • Lie down flat on your back
  • Keep a cushion underneath your knees and keep your spine neutral. The pillow is imperative as it keeps the curve in your lower back.
  • You may even put a small and rolled up towel under your back for additional support

To distribute your weight evenly, you must sleep on your back. In this way, your weight will be spread across all areas of your body. This will put less strain on your pressure points. The alignment of your spine and your internal organs gets better with this position.

5. Sleep on your back in a reclined position

Do you feel comfortable sleeping in a recliner? Though sleeping in a reclining chair is not a healthy option if you have lower back pain, this position is effective if you have isthmic spondylolisthesis.

Choose an adjustable bed so you can sleep this way to make the alignment better.

Isthmic spondylolisthesis is a health condition where one vertebra slips over the other below it. Reclining is effective for your back as it creates an angle between your thighs and trunk. This angle lessens the pressure on your spine.

These are some of the best ways to sleep with lower back pain.

Other Sleep Hygiene Tips

If you are having lower back pain, follow the below-mentioned sleep hygiene tips so that you can sleep better at night.

  • Maintain a sleep schedule: Try to follow a sleep schedule to maintain your body fall into a more natural sleeping pattern. Sleep for at least 8 hours per night.
  • Have trouble with a sleep schedule? Always opt for soothing activities like listening to soft music, taking a hot shower, doing some gentle yoga, etc. at least 30 to 60 minutes before your bedtime. These activities will soothe your mind and help you in improving your sleeping pattern.
  • Skip caffeinated drinks like coffee and other stimulants: Don’t drink a cup of coffee or other caffeinated drinks before 1 hour of your sleep time.
  • Go for some hard exercises for the morning or early afternoon hours:  If you practice some vigorous exercises before bed, they may elevate your adrenaline levels and even your body temperature. These two factors will make your sleep difficult.


The Bottom Line

Lower back pain may hamper your daily activities if it is severe. If you are dealing with back pain, your doctor will recommend one of these sleeping positions that will alleviate your pain. This will not only improve your sleep quality but also uplift your cognitive performance, mood, and energy levels.

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