Sleep And Chronic Pain: Sleep Can Help Sufferers Reawaken Their Vitality

For many people chronic pain is a way of life. If you suffer from chronic pain then you know it can affect every aspect of life, making even regular, everyday activities a chore. Chronic pain can also lead to insomnia, or difficulty falling and staying asleep. Lack of sleep creates a host of problems all its own. Those who experience both lack of sleep and chronic pain doubly suffer. This combination can lead to feelings of lethargy and apathy.

Chronic pain and lack of sleep often becomes a vicious circle. We have long recognized that physical activity helps relieve the symptoms of chronic pain. But herein lies a catch-22. How does someone who is constantly in pain and exhausted from lack of sleep stay alert enough for physical activities?

The first order of business in stopping this cycle begins with sleep. This is nature’s way of energizing the mind and body and, through regular sleep and activity, pain levels can be reduced. This can then lead to a better sense of well-being.

If you suffer from chronic pain don’t be discouraged if it takes time to get back into a regular sleep schedule. The way to start taking control of your sleep schedule is to identify what keeps you awake. Is it better pain management? Are there environmental factors that are keeping you up, such as sounds, lights and other interruptions? Do you have a sleep disorder such as OSA (obstructive sleep apnea) that can be controlled? Are stress and anxieties a factor?

Once you have identified the issues responsible for keeping you awake, you can begin to implement changes in your lifestyle or your sleep regimen that will promote better sleep. This, in turn, can give you the energy to be a more physically active, which can reduce your pain. Lack of sleep and chronic pain often go together but finding ways to improve your sleep will also help you to better control your pain.