When you have chronic pain, sleep disturbances, or insomnia are normal. Both of these conditions are generally affected by each other, while your pain can interrupt a restful night of sleep, your pain symptoms can be compounded by lack of adequate sleep.
Chronic pain sleep disorder may happen in many ways; you can find it difficult to fall asleep, wake up often at night, wake up very early in the morning, and/or feel unrefreshed or exhausted after sleeping at night.
Here are 5 little-known tips that will help you maintain a healthier sleep schedule if you experience any of these symptoms of insomnia:
It may help to increase the tryptophan level in your body by eating certain foods during your evening meal. Tryptophan is a type of protein that is essential for the development of the hormone that controls sleep, serotonin. Increased levels of tryptophan help minimize the time it takes to fall asleep, facilitate more restful sleep, and boost morning alertness. 3 Examples of such foods that promote sleep are:
- High-glycemic index carbohydrates, such as corn.
- Such fruits as cherries and kiwis.
- Whole foods, such as fatty fish, milk, pulses, and shellfish.
Consult your doctor as you decide to make dietary changes to ensure that the new food or supplement you are trying does not adversely affect any underlying medical condition or medicine you might be taking. Also, consider abstaining from foods and beverages such as coffee, tea, and chocolates that can adversely affect your sleep. Caffeine and theobromine found in these foods can interfere with your sleep cycle.
Yoga is mind-body therapy, and yoga can help alleviate chronic back pain and improve sleep through physical poses, rhythmic breathing, and meditation.
It is recommended that you learn yoga from a certified teacher who can adapt the poses according to your level of tolerance and the underlying cause of your back pain. If you learn the basic yogic poses, depending on your convenience, you can practice them at home. Be sure to tell your yoga teacher if you feel pain or discomfort when doing a pose.
- Strengthening from holding yoga positions.
In very particular muscles and muscle classes, yoga helps improve strength. It is not meant to be inconvenient to hold positions in yoga. It does, however, entail attention and particular use of muscles in the body. By staying in these yoga positions and integrating different movements, muscle strength increases.
As well as the abdominal muscles, many of the postures in yoga gently strengthen the muscles in the back. The muscles of the back and abdomen are important components of the spine’s muscular network, helping the body maintain proper upright posture and movement. The muscles of the back and abdomen are important components of the spine’s muscular network, helping the body maintain proper upright posture and movement.
- Stretching and relaxation from yoga
Yoga involves stretching and relaxation, which decreases tension in the muscles that bear the tension. Yoga demands that the individual hold gentle poses for 10 to 60 seconds, anywhere. Some muscles contract within the pose, while others stretch, facilitating relaxation and flexibility in the muscles and joints.
Stretching is very necessary for individuals with lower back pain. For instance, stretching the muscles of the hamstring (in the back of the thigh) helps to increase the movement throughout the pelvis, reducing tension throughout the lower back. Also, stretching with yoga enhances blood flow, allowing nutrients to flow in, contaminants to flow out, and muscle and soft tissue nourishment in the lower back overall.
- Posture, balance, and body alignment through yoga
During yoga poses, respiration is considered very necessary. The propensity is to hold the breath as well when maintaining a position. Instead, on both the inhale and the exhale, the goal is to provide a deep, free, and rhythmic breath through the nose. The quality of breath influences the quality of the practice of yoga in many respects. This will emphasize a relaxed body and facilitate powerful circulation.
- Posture, balance, and body alignment through yoga
The yoga poses are intended to teach the body to be sound and supple. Consistent practice and application, with the head, shoulders, and pelvis in good alignment, can result in better posture and an increased sense of balance. Also, yoga encourages stretching and strengthens all sides of the body equally, unlike many other types of exercise.
A significant aspect of minimizing or preventing lower back discomfort is proper body balance and good posture, which helps preserve the natural curvature of the spine.
Engaging in Hatha yoga offers a mental state of mind ready for meditation for the practitioner, which in turn decreases tension and improves mood. These mental advantages play an important role in yoga’s overall healing benefits.
An evening walk will help alleviate the pain and facilitate better sleep if you work in an office, get a little exercise, have chronic lower back pain, and find it hard to fall asleep at night.
Your core body temperature increases as you walk. This temperature then continues to drop due to the body’s mechanisms of heat dissipation (such as increased blood flow to the skin). The resulting lower temperature of the body then helps trigger your period of sleep. Walking can also decrease stress, encouraging better sleep.
It can also be helpful to alleviate chronic lower back pain by strengthening your back and abdominal muscles and increasing flexibility in your lower back by incorporating an evening walk in your everyday routine.
Slow, rhythmic breathing has relaxing effects on the mind and body and can help relieve pain and stress and encourage sleep. Research shows that if you wake up during the night, taking slow and deep breaths before bedtime will help you get to sleep faster and fall back asleep.
This method of technique of breathing also helps to synchronize the heart rate and rhythm of breathing, which can help facilitate deeper restorative sleep.
To help facilitate improved sleep, some sleep-enhancing preparations are available over the counter. While some are available as brewing tea bags, some can be taken by mouth in the form of tablets or capsules.
Here are a few examples which are common:
Herbal Preparations: Capsules of Valerian and chamomile tea.
Fruit extracts: Cherry Juice or Tart Cherry ExtractCapsules
Micronutrients Supplements: zinc and/or magnesium
Synthetic preparations: capsules or tablets of Melatonin
In some individuals, these supplements can help improve the onset, duration, and quality of sleep.
It could be worth trying one or more of these little-known solutions to help you get more sleep if you are sleep deprived due to your chronic pain. A trial and error process will help you comprehend which alternative works better. If, after trying these tips, you can’t sleep well, see a doctor for prescription drugs or other medical treatments.