Pain can interfere with your ability to get a good night's sleep. This can make pain and other symptoms worse or make it harder to cope with your pain.
Sleep problems can include:
- not being able to get off to sleep
- waking frequently during the night
- sleep reversal (wanting to sleep during the day rather than at night)
- feeling unrefreshed and worn out in the morning
Good sleep habits can help improve your sleep. It can take a while for this to happen, so it is important stick with any changes for a few weeks before deciding if they have worked.
- Set and maintain a regular bed and wake time schedule including at weekends.
- Establish a wind down period before bedtime. Do quiet activities or listen to relaxation tapes, practice mindfulness before going to bed.
- Try taking a warm bath before bed.
- Avoid caffeine (for example coffee, tea, coke, chocolate, energy drinks), and nicotine as these are stimulants.
- Avoid alcohol – although it may feel as though this helps you get off to sleep alcohol interferes with sleep patterns.
- If you take regular medication and think it may affect your sleep you can discuss this with your pharmacist or the person who prescribes your medication.
- Try to be active during the day but avoid strenuous activity near to bedtime.
- Establish a good sleep environment. Make sure it is a comfortable temperature and your bed is a comfy as possible. Try to keep your bedroom for sleep and sex only. Pack reminders of stress away before bed if you cannot keep them in another room.
- If you tend to lie awake worrying, use a notebook to record things you need to do and set aside some time earlier in the day to work through this.
- If you can't sleep get up and do something relaxing until you feel tired again, then try going back to bed.