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Sciatica Series: 21. How to Sleep PAIN-FREE with Back Pain and Sciatica

It is very important to get adequate sleep when trying to manage and heal your back pain/sciatica. A day of pain from back pain/sciatica can wear you out mentally and physically. A good night’s sleep can help you restore the energy required to battle the monster known as sciatica.


These are suggestions to help you sleep pain free. The key is to try the different positions and see which ones work for you.


1. Sleeping on your back with a leg wedge in place- Brad, at times, will go to sleep with an ice pack inserted underneath his back with his legs up on the wedge. He will wake up a few hours later with the ice pack no longer cold, and he will take the cushion out, turn and sleep on his side.

2. Sleeping with lumbar support- We suggest first taking a rolled sheet and pinning it around your waist. The rolled sheet will provide some support for the arch of your back while sleeping on your back and on your side. If you find it comfortable you may want to purchase a night roll lumbar support by McKenzie. If you are a thinner person with minimal body curves you may not need much support. If you are larger with more cushion on your buttock, you may need a larger support.

Night Roll Lumbar Support


3. Sleeping on your back with one, two, or three pillows underneath your legs.


4. Sleeping on your side with a pillow between your legs- You will have less rotational stress on your spine with a pillow in place. Eventually you may want to purchase a knee pillow.

A pillow between the knees may be more comfortable when sleeping on your side.


5. Sleep on your side with the painful leg (sciatica) on top. Place both ankles and feet on one to two pillows to see if that position alleviates pain.


6. Some of our patients are forced to sleep in a recliner. If so, place a lumbar support or throw pillow behind your back and recline the back of the chair as far as possible while still maintaining comfortable levels.


7. 90/90 on chair or stool


8. If your mattress is sagging, put it on the floor or put plywood between your mattress and box spring.


9. Sleep on the floor with a mattress topper.


Products Mentioned:

1) Elevating Leg Rest Pillow

2)McKenzie Night Roll Lumbar Support

3)McKenzie SlimLine Lumbar Support


Check out the full Sciatica series of videos along with downloadable guide sheets for each video on our website.


DISCLAIMER We insist that you see a physician before starting this video series. Furthermore, this video series is not designed to replace the treatment of a professional: physician, osteopath, physical therapist, orthopedic surgeon, or chiropractor. It may however serve as an adjunct. Do not go against the advice of your health care professional. When under the care of a professional make certain that they approve of all that you try. This information is not intended as a substitute for medical treatment. Any information given about back-related conditions, treatments, and products is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read in this publication. Before starting an exercise program, consult a physician.

Medical Disclaimer All information, content, and material of this website is for informational purposes only and are not intended to serve as a substitute for the consultation, diagnosis, and/or medical treatment of a qualified physician or healthcare provider.


Affiliate Disclaimer: Keep in mind that we may receive commissions when you click our links and make purchases. However, this does not impact our reviews and comparisons. We are highly selective in our products and try our best to keep things fair and balanced in order to help you make the best choice for you.

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