How to fix neck pain from sleeping wrong

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How to fix neck pain from sleeping wrong

Waking up with an aching stiff neck is an all too common experience for many people. The discomfort usually gives you neck pain from sleeping wrong which can often result in a poor posture and can strain your muscles and ligaments in your neck for a very long time.

In fact, neck pain is the most prevalent musculoskeletal disorder and one research says that approximately 10% of people have neck pain and approximately 70% of people with chronic neck pain experience poor quality of sleep. (Source- Sleep Foundation)

 Chronic neck pain can also lead you to several other health issues like headache, shoulder pain and even difficulties concentrating during the day. By understanding the ways through which your neck pain gets a relief and taking precautions to improve your sleeping posture, you can definitely enhance your quality of sleep and overall health. 

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Identifying the cause of Neck Pain from Awkward Sleeping Positions

Neck pain is mostly caused when you have slept wrong and the way we position ourselves during our sleep always impacts our neck muscles and leads to discomfort. And, given below we have mentioned all the factors that contribute to neck pain and the ways through which you can identify them. 

  1. Correct your Sleeping Position

The position in which you sleep plays a major role in your neck health. You should always understand the common positions in which you sleep and their impact on your neck pain.

Back Sleeping: Sleeping on your back is considered as the best position for your spinal alignment. But always remember to keep your pillow in the correct position neither too high nor too low, otherwise it can strain your neck muscles. 

You can find the best pillow for your neck pain in the market which will support the natural curve of your neck without tilting your head too far forward or backward. 

Side Sleeping: This is another popular position for sleeping. However it is recommended not to use a pillow that is too thick because it can tilt your head and can cause neck pain. You should also avoid tucking your chin into your chest as it can increase neck discomfort. 

Stomach Sleeping: This position is least recommended by doctors for neck health because when you sleep on your stomach your neck is forced to turn on one side causing you a huge strain on your neck. And, if you are a stomach sleeper then we would recommend you to transition to different positions.

  1. Stress and Tension

Emotional stress and anxiety can lead to muscle tension in your neck as well as your shoulders. It happens because when you are stressed your muscles tend to hold tension which results in discomfort. You can practice different relaxation techniques to release the stress such as deep breathing and mindfulness meditation. 

  1. Focus on your posture

Try improving your posture for different situations for example, if you spend long hours sitting at a desk or work on a computer , you should pay attention on your posture and here are some tips for you:

  • Keep your feet flat on the floor 
  • Sit back on your chair with your back straight and shoulders relaxed.
  • After that adjust the height of your chair and monitor to maintain the eye level. 

For your standing posture you should distribute your weight evenly on both your feet and should avoid locking your knees or slouching forward. 

Top 3 Techniques to Fix your Neck Pain if you Slept Wrong

Given below we have mentioned top 3 techniques that will fix your pain mostly in the cases of sleeping wrong:

  1. Correcting your Sleeping environment

When you improve your sleep environment half of your problem gets solved. As your pillow really helps keep your neck aligned you should move towards a cervical pillow for your neck pain. The cervical pillows have a contour that promotes a proper alignment and reduces strain on your neck. 

Additionally, you should also keep a track on your sleep positions as we mentioned earlier and dim the lights of your room to give your body a signal for rest, with that you can also practice some of the following things:

Reduce noise disturbances for uninterrupted sleep.

Maintain a comfortable room temperature. 

  1. Do Neck Pain Exercises and Stretching

The neck pain exercises and stretches can really help you with your neck pain. Doing stretch exercises like neck tilts and neck rotations gives ease to your neck stiffness and if you are someone who loves strengthening exercises, in that case you can go for exercises like shoulder rolls. Shoulder rolls engage your lower neck muscles and counteract hunching. 

  1. Make Lifestyle Adjustments

Start making adjustments in your lifestyle by firstly not bending your neck at the time of using smartphones or reading books in bed. You can prevent yourself from doing this by using your phone at eye-level which will automatically reduce the stress on your neck and will give you a neutral position.

On the other hand, try to keep yourself hydrated to soothe the soreness of your neck muscles and maintain flexibility. You can also apply heat or cold packs to relax the tensed muscles and it will also reduce inflammation. 


We hope that you have understood how important it is to prioritize proper sleep posture for your neck to be well supported and in some cases if the situation gets worse you can always seek help from professionals who will guide you to get saved from any critical problem. 

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