Can Sleeping Positions affect Posture and/or cause Lumbar Lordosis?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 20, 2008 12:29 PM GMT
    Okay, I'm worried.

    I can't sleep in a supine position no matter how hard I try. I always roll over to a lateral or a prone position.

    I'm worried that it can cause lordosis/kyphosis in the long run. Can that happen?

    And is a supine sleeping position really better than all the other sleeping positions? But even if I did fall asleep in a supine position, I roll over in my sleep! Ugh.

    I googled it and that seems to be the case, though there's no definite answer that Supine positions are better than Prone/Lateral positions. icon_confused.gif

    A tip I found on one site:

    If you sleep on your stomach, place a flat pillow under your belly. It is better to sleep on your back with a pillow under your knees.

    Anyways, should I start training myself to sleep face-up? I don't wanna end up looking like a camel, heh.
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    Jun 20, 2008 4:16 PM GMT
    I don't understand these hard to understand words you're using. What does Lordosis, Kyphosis, supine, lateral and prone mean, in the context of sleeping? I'm just a dumb poor Canadian with little to no education. Please take pity on me!

    I stopped sleeping on my stomach about 6 years ago. That's how I slept all my life, so every night, I still partially wake up at least once and start to move onto my stomach. If I do sleep on my stomach now, my neck hurts for the entire next day.

    I try to sleep on my back, but I snore terribly, and it drives my partner nuts. Plus, it wakes me up. It's that bad. So I end up sleeping on my side, switching it up every few hours. I know it's better, for me, than on my stomach.

    I have a special memory foam pillow that properly gives my neck support without raising my head higher. I also stick a pillow between my knees, which feels better.

    When I do sleep on my back, I alternate between putting a pillow under my hamstrings, and under my feet. A massage therapist told me that putting the pillow directly under your knees wasn't a good idea for your knees, because it puts pressure on them. Sometimes, that's the best position for me getting to sleep though icon_smile.gif
    And I think the point of that is to keep your legs up so that your back stays flat while you sleep.
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    Jun 20, 2008 4:33 PM GMT
    The answer is "yes." Remaining in a certain position for extended periods of time can definitely affect your posture. It is best to lie on your back as much as you can with only a thin pillow underneath your head. The reason is because sleeping in a supine position puts your body into a more neutral alignment. A possible solution to avoid rolling over to the side is to place pillows on either side of your body. This may not inhibit rolling over, however it increases the difficuilty for the body to do so.

    Be aware of your daytime posture, too, as computer use and/or sitting at a desk, etc., can lead to lordosis, kyphosis as well.
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    Jun 21, 2008 8:47 AM GMT
    Thank you so much for the replies!

    muchmorethanmuscle, Unclevername is only kidding, heh. He understands perfectly.

    And yeah SDtrainer, half of the day I'm sitting in front of a computer. I'm making a conscious effort of sitting up straighter though.

    I usually prefer the fetal position rather than the prone one anyway, and I keep a pillow.

    However, I'll try putting a pillow under my knees and sleeping in a supine position. Better to be safe than sorry anyway. And special pillows are sadly unobtainable here. Meh

    Thanks again! icon_biggrin.gif
  • CincyBOJ

    Posts: 310

    Jun 21, 2008 9:44 AM GMT
    muchmorethanmuscle did a great job in explaining the terms used here. I'll take it a step further...fwiw...

    A lordotic curve is found in the cervical (neck) and lumbar spine (lower back).
    A kyphotic curve is found in the thoracic spine (mid/upper back).

    An exaggeration of either of the curve would be examples of lordosis or kyphosis respectively.
    Also, a reversal, (i.e. the cervical spine curving the wrong way) of a curve would have the opposite's curve name, such as if the c-spine (neck) were cureved the wrong way, it would be referred to as lordosis.

    Lateral (or decubitus) is a side (left or right) so, laying in the lateral position, one would be laying on his/her side (i.e. fetal position).
  • CincyBOJ

    Posts: 310

    Jun 21, 2008 9:51 AM GMT
    Laying prone is good for the back (so they say). I fall asleep on my left side, pillow between my knees... but i'm all over the bed in my sleep.

    If you are ever trying to fall asleepwith an upset stomach, laying on your right side can sometimes help... it help the stomach empty out with the assistance of gravity.... and lets gas in the large intestine float into the decending colon so that it may be eliminated.

    <--- still sleeps in a water bed
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 24, 2008 9:19 PM GMT
    The Girl at Clarins in the department store where I work told me If I slept on my back my face would wrinkle less if that helps...icon_rolleyes.gif
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    Jun 25, 2008 12:57 PM GMT
    ROFL. As if I worry about wrinkles. ^-^
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    Jun 25, 2008 1:02 PM GMT
    My gastro dr says to sleep on your LEFT side to improve digestion. And much of my yoga experience as well as my chiropractor say sleeping on your side is ok.