Can Chiropractic Treatment Help Me With Sleep?
If you have difficulty getting a good night's sleep on a consistent basis you are not alone. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), anywhere between 50 to 70 million Americans are suffering from some type of sleep disorder! There are many reasons and underlying causes for sleep problems, from disorders like sleep apnea, to lifestyle factors like poor diet or stress, to chronic pain, but we believe the greatest cause is overstimulation of your Sympathetic Nervous System (“fight or flight”). Sleep deprivation has a number of consequences: lost productivity, decreased immune system, exhaustion, and upset moods. But there are a number of things that you can do to improve your sleep patterns and get some much-needed rest.
How Chiropractic Care Can Aid People With Sleeping Issues
In addition to back pain relief, chiropractic treatments can also help alleviate headaches and sleep problems associated with neck or back problems. According to the American Chiropractic Association, over 30 million Americans suffer from low back pain. Back pain also increases the risk of difficulty sleeping and insomnia, which can be as much as 50 percent to 80 percent higher among chronic pain sufferers.
How a Chiropractor Can Help
Chiropractic adjustments are designed to improve alignment in the neck and spine, which can help to relieve tension in the body and improve sleep. According to the National Sleep Foundation, as many as a third of people who receive chiropractic treatment for back or neck problems report getting much better sleep after treatment. A chiropractor can also recommend lifestyle modifications and improvements to your sleep hygiene, such as the ideal sleeping position, what a good mattress or pillow is, or stretching exercises that can improve relaxation and flexibility.
How the Nervous System Affects Your Sleep
The brain sends signals to the body through the central nervous system, affecting everything from your thoughts to motor skills and movement. In addition to impairing physical coordination and motor skills, sleep deprivation also affects concentration and moods, making it difficult to function at every level. People who suffer from insomnia or who can't get enough sleep may also notice that they tend to get sick more than usual.
Sleep deprivation also affects your immune system and the body's ability to effectively fight off everything from the common cold to infections. Chronic sleep deprivation can also increase the risk of long-term and potentially serious health problems like diabetes and cardiac disease.
The most common side effects of lack of sleep are:
- Concentration and memory problems
- Mood swings
- Higher risk of car or workplace accidents
- Weakened immune system
- Increased risk of high blood pressure and heart disease
- Higher risk of diabetes
- Coordination and balance problems
- Weight gain
- Lower sex drive
How a Chiropractic Adjustment Can Benefit Your REM Sleep
REM (rapid eye movement) is the part of the sleep cycle that replenishes the mind and body. As the restorative phase of sleep, REM is a critical portion of the sleep cycle. When REM sleep is interrupted due to poor or insufficient sleep, it throws off the entire sleep cycle for days, weeks, or longer until your body can "catch up." If your sleep cycle is being disrupted by pain, stiffness, or discomfort due to back or neck problems, a chiropractic adjustment may help in getting your body back on track.
Find a Chiropractor
Is back or neck pain affecting your ability to sleep and quality of life? For information about corrective chiropractic care, contact us today to learn more.