Sciatica pain can be difficult to manage. You shouldn’t have to lose sleep over it, too.
Find relief and take control of your sleep with these 3 tips for sleeping with sciatica.
Sleeping with your knees elevated may alleviate your painful symptoms by minimizing the pressure your lumbar discs place on your nerve roots.
Lie flat on your back—keep your heels and buttocks in contact with the bed and bend your knees slightly towards the ceiling.
Slide a pillow between your bed and knees for support. Slowly add additional pillows until you find a comfortable knee position.
It’s not uncommon to not find relief after a few days. Keep experimenting with different sleep positions until you find one that allows you to sleep through the night.
A warm bath can help you sleep by encouraging the release of pain-fighting endorphins and relaxing the muscles around your sciatic nerve roots.
The temperature of water should be warm and pleasant, not hot. Hot water can make it difficult to fall asleep by raising your body temperature.
If an evening soak isn’t for you, there are plenty of other heat therapy options. Try applying a hot water bottle to your lower back/buttock, or consider sleeping with an adhesive back heat wrap that provides continuous, low-level heat.
Some people find that sleeping on a surface other than a mattress, such as a floor, brings temporary relief to their sciatica symptoms.
Not all floors are squeaky clean. Avoid sanitary issues by sleeping on a yoga mat or thick towel.
Try it for more than one night. You may find it difficult to adjust to the firmness of the ground. But try sleeping on the floor for a week, and if your symptoms still do not improve—or you miss your mattress—return to sleeping in your bed.
Try one or more of these overlooked tips and you might find relief from your sciatica symptoms and enjoy a more restful night’s sleep.