5 Ways to Sleep Well with Arthritis
Arthritis isn’t always easy to deal with. Arthritic pain affects everyone differently, and it can take its toll on numerous aspects of your life, including your ability to fall asleep. And if you’re not getting the sleep you need, you may find yourself temperamental, unproductive, and generally exhausted. Fortunately, if you’re suffering from arthritis, there are several ways to alleviate this pain to help ensure that you rest soundly throughout the night. Read on to learn five ways to deal with nighttime arthritis pain.
1. Get more exercise
Making sure to get enough exercise throughout your day is one of the most reliable ways to lock in a good night’s sleep. You may not immediately take to the idea of active movement when you’re experiencing arthritis pain, but aside from helping make you tired, a well-planned fitness regimen can promote the growth of muscles that will help protect your joints from unwelcome soreness. Can't make it to the gym or out for a walk? Consider adding a treadmill, elliptical or exercise bike for a low-impact home fitness solution.
2. Bathe in warm water
Whether you prefer showering or savoring a late-night bubble bath, bathing in warm water is an excellent way to soothe aching, inflamed joints. Water temperatures ranging from 92°F to 100°F are ideal, according to the Arthritis Foundation, and such baths offer an easy opportunity for a bit of at-home stretching, which will help you wind down before settling into bed.
3. Upgrade your mattress
It goes without saying that your mattress plays a huge role in helping you fall asleep, and this role is expanded even further if you suffer from arthritis. When shopping for a mattress, bear in mind that certain mattress styles are geared for different types of sleepers. If you sleep on your side, for example, you may lean toward a softer mattress – perhaps made of memory foam – whereas back and stomach sleepers should choose a firmer selection. Be sure to research your options thoroughly and, if possible, test mattresses out in person to make certain that they suit your needs.
4. Relieve stress with pillows
In addition to purchasing a high-quality mattress, you should also acquire a fresh stock of pillows. These can be used to elevate your legs, prop up your elbows, and support other problem areas to help minimize pressure that might exacerbate aches and pains. A mattress topper can also help by adding support where it's needed most.
5. Don’t use your bed as a go-to lounging location
Once you have the ideal setup for addressing those pesky sleepless nights, it’s important that you don't use it for miscellaneous tasks, which can include anything from work-related communication to browsing the Internet. Your brain naturally develops associations between activities and the locations where you perform them, and using your bed only for sleep is one of the easiest ways to ensure that you’re actually able to drift off in the first place. To help keep your bedroom a space for sleep, create a home office with a desk and chair, or add a comfortable recliner to your living room to maintain distinct work and relaxation spots.
Arthritis might seem tough to overcome, but with these steps, you’ll be well on your way to a more fulfilling snooze each and every night. Get started by purchasing the mattress, mattress pad and pillows that are right for you.