We all lack energy from time to time but if it doesn’t improve then you should see your GP.

There are a number of conditions that can leave you feeling lethargic. Iron levels are one of the first things that can affect energy levels and cause tiredness.

An under-active thyroid is another cause of tiredness and the falling hormone levels that occur at the menopause.

Fatigue can also be a sign of diabetes.

If you are suffering from SAD (Seasonal Effective Disorder) this can also cause fatigue.

As well as the above, some medications can also cause lethargy, including beta blockers, some antihistamines, codeine-based painkillers and also some antidepressants. Also some sleeping tablets may help to get you through the night, some can cause daytime fatigue.

Of course, anxiety, stress and depression are also triggers for sapping energy levels. The best course of action is to go and visit your GP.

At this time of year one in eight of us can suffer from winter blues and one in 50 of us suffer from SAD through lack of sunlight.

Symptoms of SAD include fatigue and depression.

Its the sunlight that tells your brain to produce serotonin, which is needed to boost our mood and energy. Lack of it as autumn turns to winter causes an increase in the production of melatonin (which makes us sleepy) and a reduction in serotonin is what can cause depression.

One of the most obvious ways to treat SAD is to get outside in the daylight for at least 20 minutes a day but you can also invest in a light box. Light therapy is the most effective way of decreasing the symptoms. Also it is believed that eating foods rich in an amino acid called tryptophan increases the amount of serotonin in the brain.

Also they say that Australian research found that taking vitamin D supplements for only five days in late winter improved the mood of people with SAD. It can also prevent osteoporosis, support immunity and regulate weight. Of course the best way to get Vitamin D is through the effects of sunlight on bare skin. Amazingly they say that Vitamin D lasts for 60 days in the body so if you’ve been away for your annual holiday in the summer, it will mean your levels should be fine until November.

Other sources of Vitamin D can be found in oily fish and eggs, cheese and poultry.

Research also suggests that eating carb-rich foods helps the brain take up tryptophan. You can also find supplements and The Food Agency recommends taking 10mcg a day.



Back Pain Blog has an amazing offer to customers wishing to buy the unique and customisable: Nrem mattress.

Customise your sleep with 5 comfort changing zones that give you soft comfort for pressure points and firmer support to maintain a good posture. Change your set up at any time to suit your individual needs.

Take advantage of this £100 discount by applying this code BACKPAINBLOG100 when you purchase the mattress.  The £100 discount applies to orders which are paid in full only and can not be used in conjunction with our 0% finance option.

94% of their customers who have bought the Nrem mattress have improved their sleep.

Why the Nrem is different – Designed to give pain sufferers a better night’s sleep. 5 customisable zones for soft comfort and firm support in all the right places. Tried and tested on pain sufferers.94% of customers have improved their sleep after just 1 night on their Nrem Mattress.

It has up to 2000 pocket springs and an added temperature regulating foam for your most refreshing sleep yet.

You simply unzip the mattress cover to reveal 5 foam inserts in soft, medium and firm densities. Rearrange these inserts for soft comfort and firm support that’s tailored to you.

Each side of the mattress can be set up differently, so whatever your sleeping needs, the Nrem fits you.

They give you 100 nights to make sure the mattress is absolutely right for you and say…There’s no need to keep the packaging, just sleep as you normally would. If you’re not 100% happy, you can ‘Tweak’ your mattress with additional foam inserts in your chosen densities to find your perfect set up. If you don’t love your mattress, they will come and pick it up free of charge and refund you in full – all they ask is that you try for 30 days.

So it’s a win, win situation and one you have to give a try.





World Sleep Day is an annual event, intended to be a celebration of sleep and a call to action on important issues related to sleep, including medicine, education, social aspects and driving. It is organized by the World Sleep Day Committee of World Sleep Society (founded by WASM and WSF) and aims to lessen the burden of sleep problems on society through better prevention and management of sleep disorders. World Sleep Day is held the Friday before Spring Vernal Equinox of each year.

The holiday aims to emphasize the importance of sleep and raise awareness about sleep disorders through fun events around the globe.

According to WikiHow the best way to enjoy World Sleep Day is to –

  1. Choose if you want to sleep alone, with someone else, or with something else.Get your pet to cuddle with you while you take a nap; if the pet escapes, you can always substitute them for a stuffed animal.
  2. Determine how long you wish to “celebrate”. Is this going to be a power nap because you have work for the day, a cat nap for a few hours, or quality time with your pillow for the entire day? Don’t tell yourself that you need to wake up and do something productive instead of sleeping. If you can’t sleep, just stay in bed all day!
  3. Dress appropriately. The more comfortable you are, the better sleep you’ll have. Be sure to count each layer of blanket material as one layer in general
  4. Sprawl out on a bed, sofa, hammock, or any comfortable setting. This is a day to be lazy, so however you position yourself is up to you. You can have your feet propped up on the sofa’s arm rest instead of squishing yourself on the cushions, have a foot planted on the ground if you are in a hammock so you can rock back and forth while going to sleep.
  5. See if the sleep that you got for the day made a difference. Ask yourself if you feel more refreshed than before today. Sleep is healthy for people, as it lowers stress and refreshes the body for the next day.

It could also be a time to change your mattress so why not take advantage of the discount on N:Rem mattress’s by simply adding this code ‘BACKPAINBLOG’ at check out to get £30 off your order.


Have a glass of semi-skimmed milk with 2 teaspoons of honey before you got to bed for a natural goodnight’s sleep. Our immune system also works harder during sleep to fight and prevent illness.

Take Melatonin which is a hormone that plays a key part in regulating your natural body-clock. Studies have shown that melatonin improves sleep quality, particularly in the elderly.

Hypnotherapy is another one which is supposed to help – obviously, it’s self-hypnosis which you might find some tricks on that on the internet otherwise you would need to book an appointment with a Hypnotherapist to take you through it.

Take Valerian as it is thought to have a sedative effect. Studies have shown that the root of the valerian makes getting to sleep easier and increases a deeper sleep.

Relaxation therapy which is where you (the patient) focuses on relaxing different muscle groups.

Don’t go to bed early as this can create negative associations with being in bed that turn a short bout of poor sleep into chronic insomnia.

Sounds silly but they suggest you put your Pj’s on as doing this can make a big difference to your routine and mindset on how you wind down.

Take a warm bath with Lavender oils.

Eat more leeks and onions or garlic and artichokes as they contain prebiotic fibres that fuel the healthy bacteria in our gut and can have a profound effect on our health and sleep.

Fill a hot water bottle about half an hour before you go to bed and do this regularly so a routine helps you to unwind.

If you have to pop to the loo in the night then install a red light (or a battery operated red candle) in your bathroom as it can make it easier to fall back to sleep.

Make sure you have the right mattress. There are lots of companies who let you try before you buy so give some a trial run and see if a different mattress helps with your sleep. A huge £100 off (for February)the Nrem Mattress* using the code BACKPAINBLOG100 

Listen to music, relaxation music not head banging stuff.

Sort out your bedroom. I made mine my sanctuary and redesigned it completely a couple of years ago. I had some Venetian blinds fitted in a dark wood colour so that I could make the room dark at any time of the day or early evening. I changed my curtains from a busy floral pattern to a plain cream colour.

I changed the wattage of my lights to as low as I could have them, but still be able to read. I changed the light shades to compliment the curtains in a plain colour. 

I bought a small electric heat pad to warm the bed up on a cold night or cold afternoon. I filled the bed with lots of cushions as well as a v-shaped cushion.  I made sure that my bedside clock had a dark background rather than a bright luminous one. I bought a radio/ cd and put it next to my side of the bed so if I’m having trouble going off to sleep or wake up in pain and need help going back to sleep again, then I can simply press the play button, pop my earphones in without even disturbing my husband.

I have a lavender spray which I spray on my pillow just before I go to bed. The room temperature is very important to me. I actually have no heat on in the bedroom as I prefer to snuggle down under the duvet. 



If you are suffering from degenerative disc disease then they say that one of the best positions is to sleep on your stomach as this can relieve the pressure on the disc space. You should then place a flat pillow under your stomach and hips to help reduce stress on your lower back.

If you are suffering from spinal stenosis then try to sleep on your side with your knees curled up in the fetal position. This can help relieve pressure on the nerve root. If you are lucky enough to have a reclining chair or adjustable bed then this can be adjusted so that your head and knees are elevated to relieve the pressure on the nerve.

If you have pain from a herniated lumber disc then the most comfortable sleep position is really dependant on which disc is prolapsed. For a paracentral (the most common) it is better to lie on your stomach and for a foraminal, it’s best if you sleep on your side in the fetal position.

However, in general, elevating the knees slightly by placing a pillow under them while lying on your back can help many general forms of low back pain.

According to bed site Drommabed the best position if you are experiencing upper back pain they suggest you use one memory foam pillow or no pillows under your head. Lie on your side and place a pillow between your knees. Drommabed also has the best positions for lots of different types of pains.