- 20 July 2013
Sleep well! It is important to have a good night sleep to recover from the day and prepare for the next.
Be in a comfortable position when you sleep.
If you sleep on your back, place a pillow underneath your head and neck (not shoulders) to keep the head in line with the spine. If you are kyphotic, you might need more than one pillow.
If your lower back is stiff, place a pillow underneath your knees to decrease the excessive lumbar curve. Do not flatten your lower back against the mattress. Respect the natural curves of your spine.
If you sleep on your side, have one or two pillows underneath your head and neck to keep the head in line with the spine.
If your back or hips are stiff, try sleeping with a pillow between your thighs.
Avoid sleeping on your front as it increases the lumbar lordosis and stresses the neck. If you do, place a pillow underneath your abdomen to protect your back.
A good mattress should support your spine. When you lie down, the natural curves of your spine should be maintained. You should be able to slide your hand between the mattress and the small of your back. A large gap means the bed is probably too hard and no gap means the bed is too soft.
The term ‘orthopaedic’ is misleading: it only means it is the firmest bed in the manufacturer’s range. There is no universal standard of firmness.
Always buy the biggest bed you can. The heavier you are, the firmer the mattress you need.
When buying a bed, consider your sleeping partner.
To get out of bed, roll on your side, move one leg over the side of the bed, followed by the other leg, then push your body upright with your arms.
When making your bed, kneel on a cushion to tuck in the sheets.