Nothing will interrupt a good night’s sleep like experiencing pain. But, before we look at the best sleeping positions for injuries, let first see why sleeping on your stomach is bad for you.
It’s bad for your spine. Sleeping on your stomach is bad for your back because it creates an unnatural pressure on the middle of your body, putting stress on your back.
You could injure your neck. Stomach sleeping means twisting your head in an unnatural position for an extended period of time. If you’ve ever woken up with a neck pain, it’s could be because you slept in a position that put extra stress on that area.
Say hello to acne and aging. Sleeping with your face pressed directly against a pillow causes friction on the skin, causing wrinkles. Breathing into a pillow can cause moisture to become trapped on the surface of your skin. Combined with bacteria that accumulates on pillowcases, this can also cause breakouts.
Stuck on your stomach? Here’s how to break that bad sleeping habit:
- Wear a t-shirt with a pocket, and put a tennis ball in it
- Prop yourself up with pillows so you can’t easily roll over
- Reinvent a classic fairytale by taping a frozen pea to your stomach, some sleep scientists think just a small amount of pressure will be enough to wake you up or roll over!
How Your Body Repairs Itself While You Sleep
Energy consumption is lowered. When we’re not using our energy on daily activities, it can be redirected to other areas of the body that need energy for healing or repair. It also means that we “refuel” for the next day.
Detoxification begins. According to Chinese medicine, the liver is most effective between 1a.m. and 3 a.m.
Muscle and bone tissue starts to regenerate. Sleep is a superpower! And like a superhero, your body starts to repair muscle and bone tissue while asleep. Levels of adrenaline and corticosteroids decline while we sleep, and instead our bodies produce HGH — the human growth hormone. This protein promotes growth while repairing muscles and bones.
Our body fights infections. While we’re asleep, our immune system is hard at work. Our body pumps tumour necrosis factor (TNF) through our blood while we sleep, a cancer-killing cell signalling protein. Studies have found that sleep deprived adults were more prone to infections.
Hormones regulate. While we sleep, our body regulates hormone production which can improve your mood, and leave you waking up refreshed.
Skin cell production increases. Studies have found that sleep deprivation causes wounds to heal more slowly. Conversely, deep sleep speeds up the skin’s metabolic rate, and cell production is increased.
Our heart relaxes. While we sleep, our heart rate drops to between 10 and 30 beats per minute. This lowers blood pressure and lessens strain on the heart and circulatory system.
We lose weight. When you get less than seven hours of sleep, your ghrelin and leptin hormones are impacted. These hormones control your feelings of hunger and fullness. This is why you’re likely to skip the gym and rely on high-carb-high-sugar foods to get you through the day when you’re tired.
The Best Sleeping Positions For Pain And Injuries