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Arthritis Pain and Sleep


Arthritis pain makes it difficult for many people to get a good night’s sleep. Even worse, tossing and turning at night can actually increase the perception of pain.

“There is a reciprocal relationship between pain and poor sleep. poor people sleep“The more they hurt,” says Kevin Fontaine, PhD, assistant professor of rheumatology at Johns Hopkins University. “If people with arthritis can improve the quality of their sleep, they can usually reduce their day-to-day pain.”

Here are eight tips for sleeping better from arthritis experts.

1. Don’t go to bed with joint pain

Managing arthritis pain is important at all times, but it is especially important before bedtime. “If you go to bed in pain, you’re almost certain to have trouble sleeping,” Fontaine says. try to arrange your Medicine Schedule so that it provides peak relief around the time you want to go to bed. Avoid doing activities in the evening that provoke arthritis pain. “Some people with arthritis find that they sleep better after taking a hot shower before bed or using an electric blanket to relax.” joint pain,” says Andrew Louis, PT, DPT, assistant clinical professor, University of California, San Francisco.

2. Stay away from stimulants before bedtime

It is hardly news that consuming coffee or other caffeinated beverages late in the day can interfere with sleep. But many people don’t know about other hidden sources. caffeine, including colas and some over-the-counter pain relievers. Always check the label to make sure you are not getting caffeine. Black tea also contains stimulants that can wake some people up when they want to sleep. If you are having trouble sleeping then herbal tea is a better option in the evening. Alcohol can help some people fall asleep, but too much can disrupt sleep at night, leaving you full and jittery.

3. Deal with everyday stress

The unavoidable stresses of everyday life can also disrupt sleep. Of course, you can’t eliminate them all, but you can put them in their place. “One strategy is to avoid stressful activities or thoughts before bedtime,” Fontaine says. “If the news bothers you, don’t watch it. Don’t pay the bills. Don’t make a list of all the things you have to do tomorrow.” Instead, set your schedule to do something relaxing for an hour or two. sleep time. Listen to music. read a book. Work on a hobby as long as you find it cool. If you still find yourself fret, practice some relaxation techniques like meditation or progressive relaxation.

4. Exercises to Help Your Arthritis and Your Sleep

Be as active as possible during the day. It will strengthen your muscles and joints – and it can help keep you tired enough to sleep. Activity has also been shown to reduce stress, which promotes a restful sleep. Staying active isn’t always easy when you suffer from arthritis. However, activities such as swimming, Water aerobicsModerate walking is possible for many people with arthritis. “Common sense is to exercise earlier in the day, because Exercise “It can be arousing itself,” says Fontaine. “But some of our patients prefer to do a little light activity in the evening — for example, walking around the neighborhood — to tire themselves out. The best advice is to find what works for you.”

5. Build a Sound Sleep Chamber

Reserve your bedroom for sleeping. That way, you’ll associate being under the covers with falling asleep. “Avoid watching TV, reading, working on your computer, or doing other stimulating activities in bed,” says Wilfred Pidgeon, PhD, assistant professor psychiatry at the University of Rochester Sleep and Neurophysiology Research Laboratory and author of The Sleep Manual: Training Your Mind and Body to Get the Perfect Night Sleep. “Make the bedroom as sleep-friendly as possible. Use heavy curtains or shade to eliminate distracting light. If there is a problem with your voice, use earplugs.”

What is the best type of mattress? Experts say a medium-sized mattress is often best for lower back pain. “If you are suffering from knee pain, try placing a pillow under or between you. knees To take some of the pressure off your joints,” says Kimberly Top, PhD, professor and chair of the department of physical therapy and rehabilitation services at the University of California, San Francisco. “A small pillow under your neck can help align your spine and avoid can help” Pain in the neck While you sleep Experiment to find what makes you comfortable. “

6. Don’t stay in bed

It may sound contradictory, but staying in bed for too long can lead to poor sleep. Behave insomniaExperts often limit the amount of time people spend in bed. “That way, you help make sure that when you go to bed, you’re likely to get enough sleep to fall asleep,” Dove says. “If you find yourself unable to sleep for more than 15 minutes, get out of bed and do something that is not stimulating until you get enough sleep to try to fall asleep again.” Reason: You wouldn’t associate bed with feeling restless. Over time, this strategy will help you associate the bed with sleeping, not tossing and turning.

7. Use sleeping pills sparingly

Sleep medications may be useful for people who have acute insomnia. But if you suffer from chronic disease insomnia, which is often true for many people with arthritis, the first-line treatment should be better sleep hygiene, Dove says. “Medicines treat the symptoms. Behavioral medicine can really cure insomnia,” he says. In fact, some studies suggest that behavioral medication may be more effective for many people. “Sleep medications are often used to help people get through a bad patch of insomnia,” says Dove. “But when people stop taking them, insomnia often returns — until they learn to practice better sleep habits.”

8. Keep Good Sleep Hygiene All Together

Basic tips on promoting good sleep habits are sometimes referred to as “sleep hygiene.” Together, they can have a dramatic effect on improving sleep quality. In a 2009 study published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, older volunteers with osteoarthritis who participated in a program of sleep hygiene reported better sleep and less pain. The benefits were still evident a year after the program ended.



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