The average person spends around 1/3 of the day lying down and sleeping. This is time dedicated to rest and strength regeneration. Unfortunately, we still often wake up tired, and with a backache. It is a warning telling us that something is not right. A correct lying position helps to relieve the burden of the spine. However, some conditions must be met.
The surface, or mattress that is being laid on is important. It must not be too soft, as it causes kyphosis bending. On the other hand, it must not be too hard as well. The mattress should be adjusted to the physiological curves of the spine (lordosis and kyphosis). To choose the best orthopaedic mattress you can seek advice from your physiotherapist. The surface should also be breathable, to avoid excessive warmth and humidity.
Another crucial element is the pillow which secures the correct positioning of the head and neck. The best solution is an orthopaedic pillow, adjusted to the shape and size of your cervical curve.
People who prefer sleeping on their back should place a rolled towel or special half-roller under the knees, which helps to unburden the lumbar curve (you should feel lumbar lordosis decrease – especially recommended for patients suffering from intensive lordosis). While lying on your front, the roller/towel should be placed under the feet, so that the knee joints are slightly bent. In this position, the head should be flat on the surface, slightly twisted towards one side (lying on a cheek is recommended). When lying on your side, the lower limbs should be bent at the hip and knee joints (threefold flexing) and a special wedge should be placed between the knees. Obese patients should additionally place a pillow underneath the waist to prevent a collapse of the side they are laying.
An important element which has a large influence on our mood during the day is the way we get up. It is a mistake to jump straight out of bed to turn off the alarm. Before we actually get up, we should stretch to wake up our muscles and prepare them for the day’s work ahead. Next, going from lying on the back to standing should be performed in a specific manner. First, we should roll onto our side, before allowing our legs to drop to the floor on the side of the bed. Simultaneously, we should support ourselves with the arms, and stand up. This technique of getting up helps us to unburden the spine. Your physiotherapist will show you how to do it.
Remember that getting into and out of bed is easier when the bed is slightly higher. When your bed is too low, your knees are higher than your hips when sitting. This makes it impossible to make the correct movements getting in and out of bed.