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Dumb question - how do you sleep

yasminayyasmina Posts: 166
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:39 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
with a cervical collar on? I can't even imagine in being comfortable in any way. Are you permitted to take it off at night?

I read that a lot of neckies swear by recliner chairs. We do have one of those, but it's downstairs in our living room.

Any insight you could share would be greatly appreciated.


  • Iam still in my collar and have found its much easier to sleep in the recliner!. I tried sleeping in bed ONE NIGHT in the morning my muscles in my neck and shoulders hurt BAD!. I didn't even think about removing my collar to sleep as you never know what damage that could cause to your surgeons work. I have now slept in the recliner for almost 2 months and you do get used to it believe me. I have heard some do sleep in bed using many pillows to elevate their back and neck I tried that also and for me it didn't work. Also be ware sleeping in your collar causes SNOREING!. I had the recliner in the bedroom so I could at least be close to my wife. Within 2 days she moved the recliner into the living room! LOL
  • Spent 5 weeks in Miami J. Always used it at night.

    Pre-surgery I used a temperpedic pillow. Post op, I switched to two very soft down pillows that would fold around the uncomfortable Miami J collar.

    After two weeks, I finally started getting comfortable at night. Never tried a recliner.
  • i had a three level acdf,never had to wear it while resting or sleeping. Just when i was up and around.i slept in my bed from the time i got home,i found my recliner was not comfortable at all.I think though that i'm an odd man out on this one because alot of people say that they were in there recliners for a few months after surgery.I think it just depends on the person.
  • I look foraward to a full nights sleep! :<
    I tried everythimg with pillows. Wife will go aout and get me a recliner (I can;t leave the house) I agree with the sleep in bed making you hurt like )&& when you wake up. I use a very flat 1" pillow supporting my back & neck.

    Beacuse I had 2 verbtebrae removed my collar is my constant companion for 12 weeks.

    I would not suggest sleeping w/o your collar because in REM sleep you could toss & turn.. and then back to the hospital. 5 days was enought for me thank you! Erick :)
  • For me, I used a bed rest t.v. cushion against my head board with my feather pillow just above it to support my head and neck. It required sleeping sitting up for the first 4 nights post-op but tried laying down and that was a major pain jolter!
    I have a recliner too, but lying back made me feel like I couldn't breath. I'm happy to say that I'm laying down completely and comfortably in my bed at 12 days post-op. Feel a little stiff in the am but nothing major.

    As far as the collar, my surgeon didn't require one at all. Just told me to use the soft collar I had before surgery for comfort as I need it.I used it and kept it on for the first 4 nights 24/7 as I couldn't hold my head up and it helped me alot. I only use my collar now whenever I'm out and riding in the car.Every surgeon is as different as we are and so is the case with the collar and sleeping problems.

    Multiple ACDF C4-6 with hardware: Nov. 13,09

    Buldging discs T9-10 & T12-L1: 6/22/06-possibly herniated now,DDD,stenosis,spondylosis,osteophte complex, degenerative osteoarthritis-cervical & thorasic spine

  • Yasmina,

    When I had my C5/6 fused, I slept in my recliner. I could not sleep on my side or back in my bed. I had the Aspen Collar.

    When my C6/7 was fused, I was very comfortable on my right side or back in my bed! Also again in an Aspen Collar. I don't know why the difference, but that was my experience. I didn't find sleeping in my Collar all that uncomfortable, I had a bunch of soft comfy pillows too! Why the difference between the two levels, I don't know.

    For both I had the Aspen Collar for about 6 weeks, and for my C6/7 was put back in it after 2 and a half months! If I have a lot of stress, I will sleep in it - seems to keep the tightness at bay!

    Happy Thanksgiving!!!!

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Hiya,my first fusion I wore a soft collar,no problem sleeping in the bed,neck didn't fuse.1 year later redone with removal of hardware wore a miami j...couldn't really sleep anywhere.Neck healed.In 2008 had next level done(c6c7) wore no collar.Two weeks after surgery hurt worse than ever.Been sleeping in recliner for a year now.No more surgeries for me.Talking to PM dr about SCS.Wishing you better luck than me.Peace and love. Mark
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