Following a traumatic accident you will need to undergo rehabilitation. Accident rehabilitation has many facets and one of the more important ones is sleep. Pain management and sleep go hand-in-hand and it’s imperative that you listen to your physiotherapist when they tell you get some rest.

The Relationship Between Sleep And Pain Management

Why you need sleep when you’re trying to manage pain

Accident rehabilitation is a combination of pain management and physiotherapy. In order for these to work in tandem for your recovery, you need to get ample sleep. It is often thought that sleep is when the body and mind shut down. On the contrary; sleep is when our mind processes the day and our body repairs tissues, synthesizes hormones and restores itself.

Following an accident, your body needs extra time to rejuvenate. When you’re in pain, your body will try to overcome it and keep you awake. When you’re deprived of sleep, your body becomes more sensitive to pain. It’s a cycle that will go on until it is corrected. You are especially at risk for sleep deprivation after a traumatic accident because your body is working overtime to repair itself.

Get to bed properly: How your physiotherapist can help

Your physiotherapist will discuss better sleep techniques with you that will also help manage your pain. For example, your accident rehabilitation regime may require you to sleep sitting up instead of horizontal. This may feel unnatural at first but your physiotherapist can show you how to use pillows and towels, or even recommend an adjustable bed, to help you sleep better sitting up.

Moreover, your physiotherapist can show you specific exercises you can do before bed that can help loosen tight muscles. The type of pain medication you are may be keeping you up too. Talk to your doctor about changing the medication to something that will not affect your ability to sleep.

Enjoy a full night’s sleep: What you can do

Do not take any over-the-counter sleep aids unless they have been cleared with your doctor. Avoid stimulants before bed like caffeine, nicotine and processed foods, and limit your screen time. Spending an hour on your phone or laptop before bed can make it harder for you to fall asleep. Finally, keep a regular sleeping schedule and try to get to bed and wake up at the same time everyday.

As you recover from an accident, getting enough sleep while managing pain is key. Contact us more information about our accident rehabilitation programs.


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