Sleep. All of us could probably use more of it with our go-go lifestyles. Approximately 14 per cent of Canadians suffer from insomnia.

A good night’s sleep is essential to our overall health and well-being.

It can be frustrating, when we do get around to getting some shut-eye, we can wake up with neck, back or shoulder pain. We should wake up from our slumber refreshed and relaxed instead of with aches and pains.

Making a few simple changes can help you reduce the pain associated with your sleeping pattern and will go a long way in making your slumber that much better.

Below are some common causes of sleep associated pain and what you can do to improve your sleep for each.

Choosing the right mattress

Your mattress is your best tool for protecting your body during your sleep.

A good mattress should distribute your weight evenly while ensuring your lower back keeps its proper curvature.

Your mattress should provide full body support. If there are gaps between your body and your mattress, you won’t get the support you need.

Also, be sure to turn your mattress upside down every few months to prevent body indentations.

Choosing the right pillow to support your neck  

It’s important to support your spine’s natural curve as you sleep. This is why finding the right pillow for you is essential. Pillows don’t follow a one size fits all rule. Your body shape, size and preferred sleep position should influence your pillow choice.

For side sleepers, try to find a pillow thick enough to fill the gap between your neck and mattress. This will keep your neck in a neutral position.

For back sleepers, the thinner the pillow the better.

Your main goal when looking for a pillow should be to find one that properly supports your head and aligns your neck with the rest of your spine. The softness or firmness of the pillow is personal preference and won’t factor in to the support your pillow provides.

See your chiropractor if pain persists

If you are still experiencing pain in the mornings as a result of your sleep, see your chiropractor.

Chiropractors are experts in the diagnosis and treatment of conditions of the spine and musculoskeletal system (the body’s bones, muscles, cartilage, tendons, joints and connective tissue). Your chiropractor will first assess your current condition or the source of your problem and then develop a treatment plan for you to help ease your pain.