If you are in chronic pain, the last thing you want is to not get a good night’s sleep. I have suffered from more pain and chronic fatigue due to my sleepless nights and I have tried a myriad of different things to help me get a better night’s sleep.
Here are six ways that have helped me…
- Limit my caffeine intake and have none after 12 Noon. Caffeine is a stimulant found in coffee, tea, and some sodas that can block sleep-inducing chemicals in the brain, keeping you awake when you don’t want to be.
- Manage your pain medication properly. Check out which ones should be taken in a morning rather than at night. I set my phone alarm to remind me to take a particular medication at 6pm as if I leave it any later than that it keeps me awake. Look at the ones that help you relax and take those at night rather than in a morning. You will be surprised at the difference it can make by taking your medication at certain times of the day. Your GP should be able to advise you on this as well.
- If you haven’t tried sleep aids then it is definitely worth trying some but always consult with your GP first before taking any form of supplements. Insomnia is frequently treated with antidepressants which are also given for chronic pain so this could help you sleep. Most sleep aids, on the other hand, are only meant to be used for a few weeks at a time, so don’t count on using them for more than that. I have recently found SureSleep from the company DNA to really help me sleep better. I would normally wake up several times with pain and then find it difficult to get back to sleep but these have really helped me settle down and go back to sleep again. Each capsule contains: 400mg SureSleep® (Prunus Cerasus, Rhodiola Rosea, Valerian Root).
- Make sure your bedroom is perfect for sleeping. Lighting is something that can keep you awake so if you have light coming in from an outside light then maybe think of black out blinds or something similar to that. If your bedside lights are very bright try lowering the bulb wattage or do what I did and put some lights across the bedhead to create a relaxing atmosphere. Make sure your quilts and blankets are light as heavy ones can wake you up. Keep your room at the right temperature.
- Have something nearby that helps you sleep, like a heat pad. I have a small electric heat pad I leave by the side of my bed then when my pain wakes me up I pop under my back and turn it on. I found this great company Heat Treats that have lots and lots of heatable goods to help with pain.