• Oct03

    Bed and Sleep Recommendations

    Mahomet Chiropractic, Acupuncture, & Massage

    Bed/Sleep Recommendations

    You should spend about 1/3 of your life sleeping and that is a great time for you to work on your spinal health.  With that said, patients ask me all the time about what bed/sleep recommendations I have and I want to give you my suggestions:

    • In general you should have more of a firm mattress
    • My mattress is a Durango from Denver Mattress Co. and I would suggest you try that one out for a firmness measurement. Mine is about 9 years old and in pretty good shape (I do not know if it’s made the same today as it was then).  I checked out reviews on the Durango and the major complaint is sagging where someone sleeps.
    • The most bragged about mattress I hear over and over is the Sleep Number. The Sleep Number beds give you the options of picking the firmness level (#) that works best for you but again I would keep that # towards the higher (firm) range.   I have had a number of patients with back issues (which I believe were contributed by their Sleep #) using a setting around 50 or below.  A couple Sleep Number users made the comment of having separate chambers dividing the bed (if that’s a good or bad thing for you).
    • I recommend many times for patients to use an air mattress (that stays aired up throughout the night) set at a higher firmness level. These recommendations often come for those whose only bed is on the softer/non-supportive side and who come in with so much low back pain they can barely move or they are consistently waking with reoccurring symptoms.  This can be a good transition step before someone gets a new firm bed.
    • I also get a lot of patients who like pillow top mattresses because their comfortable. Unfortunately, it’s like a deep cushioned recliner that feels good while you’re in there but it doesn’t provide great support.  Your body should be free to move as it needs to throughout the night and that’s why I would not recommend it.
    • Side sleepers should have a pillow at the correct thickness that keeps their spine and head in-line without the head being kinked down towards the mattress or pushed up and away from it. Also, many find comfort sleeping in the “fetal position” with the knees brought up towards the chest and with a pillow between them.
    • Back sleepers can try having a pillow under their knees and either no pillow or a smaller/softer pillow (I prefer a fluffy Down pillow) to support what should be the normal curve in the neck
    • Do NOT sleep on your belly. Belly sleeping puts a lot of stress on your low back and you have to turn your head 1 way or the other just to breathe.  Picture someone with their head constantly turned to the right for 8 hours.  That’s not normal nor is it good for your neck and upper back.
    • Remember to have your spine checked and adjusted regularly (I get checked every 2 weeks). Proper motion and alignment of the spine is extremely important to allow your nervous system to function properly.  Chiropractic care helps balance the autonomic nervous system which is why I get to hear so many of my patients tell me their sleep (controlled by the autonomic nerves) is so much better.
    • Wear and tear combined with daily stressors and gravity take a toll over time. However you can be proactive now to help yourself be able to better adapt to these stressors.
    • I hope you will find some of this advice helpful and try not to stress over the bed hunt because that’s not healthy for you either!


    Be Well!

    Dr. Walk