Why Pain Affects Your Sleep and How to Sleep Better

Kelly groaned uncontrollably for the fourth time. She had woken up about six times within the past two hours. Anytime she tried to turn over to her side, her back throbbed with pain. The back pain had started just two days ago when she spent extra hours writing some articles. The mistake she had made was bending over to write the content without resting her back on the chair. Afterward, she paid severely and dearly for it as dark circles had formed under her eyes. And that occurrence made her to ask herself before going to bed: “Why does pain affect sleep?”

The answer is simple. Sleep is fundamental to human well-being. The effects of lack of sleep include stress, fatigue, and high blood pressure, among others. And pain is a factor that affects our sleep and can give birth to those adverse health effects. When we sleep, we all go through regular cycles of light sleep, deep sleep and Rapid Eye Movement (REM). We must go through this to feel refreshed when we wake up. However, when you are in pain, this cycle will be interrupted. And sudden pain can make you bolt upright in bed with a palpitating heartbeat. When this happens, the ordeals mentioned above can start again regardless of the stage you were before the pain woke you up. Thus, you might end up with a fragmented sleep cycle, including light sleep, pain, light sleep, deep sleep, and pain.

How to sleep better

Now that you know the essence of sleeping well, the challenge of better sleep is easier. Here are some tips you can follow to sleep better whether in the daytime or night time:

  • Be less conscious of your phone: Yes, your emails are important. We understand the need for you to receive that vital phone call. However, these are the very factors that are mitigating against better sleep. Next time you want to sleep, mute your phone if you don’t want to turn it off. Your emails will still be waiting for you, and so will those people that called you. Your sleep is crucial if you want to function well throughout the day.
  • Be skillful with your bedroom décor: Your bedroom is where you spend most of your time. You are either sleeping there, watching the television, or working on your laptop. Make sure it is an attractive place to you. You can hang up handmade decoration to encourage better sleep. You can put scented candles in strategic places if it aids better sleep. What you do with your room is your decision.
  • Be active during the day: We’re not saying you should exercise if you don’t want to. We’re saying you should be engaged throughout the day. If you don’t stay busy, there is a possibility of taking short naps which will affect your sleep in the night. So, during the day, read a book. Workout in the gym. Walk the dog. Do anything that keeps you happy and busy.


Pain will affect your sleep, whether it’s a muscle pull or a stomach ache. However, you don’t have to feel like a solution does not exist. There are many conscious efforts you can make to ensure you sleep better. You just have to find the one that works for you!

Photo Credit: Miravalresorts