How to Break Up With Stomach Sleeping for Good

Open Space Andy and Jacinta

You’re dead tired after another long day…

Your muscles ache and you cannot wait to experience whole body bliss when your head hits the pillow.

You jump into your favourite sleep position (stomach sleeping starfish of course). You shut your eyes, and after a few tosses and turns it’s morning.

You are ready to greet the day when you realise…something in your neck doesn’t feel right!

Your body feels stiff, sore and achy. Your back feels like it is going to BREAK!

How did you wake up feeling even worse?!

This is a common story, and one we hear too often. So much of the time your sleep posture is responsible!

Why Stomach Sleeping is Bad for You.

Let’s chat first about WHY stomach sleeping is bad for you and causes so much stress on your body and spine.

  1.  When you sleep on your stomach you have turn your head to the side (so you can breathe), and holding that position during the night will obviously give you a sore neck!
  2.  You also put your lower back into extension or LORDOSIS when lying on your stomach.

But we get it…sleeping on your stomach is SO COMFORTABLE or the only way you can get a good night’s sleep! These are very valid points so we are here to make things a little easier for you with some clear action steps.

How to Break Up With Stomach Sleeping for GOOD!

  1. Build a pillow fort – When side sleeping HUG a pillow to ensure your shoulder doesn’t roll under your body and cause shoulder issues. You may even like to put a pillow between your knees so that your hips are stacked correctly. This pillow will also stop you from involuntarily rolling onto your stomach in the middle of the night.If you attempt to sleep on your back but are worried about back pain, simply pop a pillow under your knees so they have a slight bend. This will take the pressure off your lower spine.
  2.  Change of Scenery – We are creatures of habit, so if you have formed a BAD habit like stomach sleeping in one location, chances are your brain associates that bad habit with that specific location. Spice things up a bit by sleeping in your spare room for few nights, rearranging your room or sleeping on the opposite side of the bed!
  3.  Consistency is Key – Like anything, breaking bad habits and making new ones takes time. Chances are if you are a stomach sleeper, you have been for most of your life. Cut yourself some slack, keep persisting and eventually you will get there.
  4. Get Your Spine Checked by a Professional – Your body is designed to adapt to the physical and mental stressors around you. If you’ve been stomach sleeping for a while, chances are your spine and muscular system has made a few changes to cope with that consistent stressor. This is where a health professional such as a chiropractor or physiotherapist can help re-train your spine and muscles and unwind some of that adaptive stress. In our experience, after clients have been adjusted for a while, they find breaking up with stomach sleeping MUCH easier! Take it from me, I was once a stomach sleeper too!

Try this at home, share it with your loved ones and let us know how you go breaking up with stomach sleeping! Now remember…by healing yourself, you inspire your tribe and transform your world. Yours in great health,

Dr Andy + Dr Jacinta x

Andy and Jacinta