The best sleep positions for whatever type of pain you’re experiencing

When you’re in pain, all you want to do is rest; if you can’t sleep due to pain, this becomes frustrating. In order to help you get those all-important Zzzs when you’re dealing with body aches and pains, Drömma mattress broke down what position you should sleep in depending on what type of pain you’re feeling. And turns out that sleeping on your back is often your best bet.

Although many of us sleep on our sides or stomachs, lying supine (or face-upward) is beneficial for many injuries. And when it comes to best sleep positions for pain — or even when you feel just fine — sleeping on your stomach is rarely a good thing, since Drömma wrote it’s bad for your spine and could injure your neck.

So to get the best night’s sleep while you’re suffering, try these positions based on the type of pain you’re experiencing. And get some extra pillows handy — you’re gonna need them.

  • Headache or toothache: On your back with an extra pillow under your head.
  • Neck pain, lower back pain, or broken rib: On your back with one or no pillow. Prop another pillow under your knees. If you have a broken rib, tuck pillows around your body to help you from moving in your sleep.
  • Upper back pain, groin injury, hip injury, or knee injury: On your side with one or no pillow. Put another pillow between your knees.
  • Shoulder pain: On your side with one pillow. The side experiencing pain should be facing up. Place one pillow under the arm that’s hurting and keep that arm at chest height. Put another pillow between your knees.
  • Broken arm or wrist: On your back with one or no pillow. Prop another pillow under your knees. Place a pillow on your chest and rest injured arm on it.
  • Sprained or broken ankle: On your back with no pillow. Prop ankle up with several pillows. If your ankle is broken, elevate it higher than your chest.

If you need a visual, here’s an infographic of the sleeping positions from Drömma:


Whether you sleep alone or have a partner, these positions should help with your pain. And of course, see your physician if it’s a more serious problem or if pain persists. But at least with these sleep positions, you’ll likely get some shut-eye despite your discomfort.

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