Rest and Back Pain
Last updated: April 2021
Getting a good night's rest is something many of us in this community struggle with. I too have had and still have my problems with that. Due to the lower part of my back already being conjoined I can only sleep on my sides. I wake up multiple times during the night simply just to move to the other side. And on one of my lesser days it goes together with a lot of pain.
Bed or chair
I have struggled with bad nights for a long time. The worst periods when my hips needed to be replaced. I wasn’t even able to sleep in my bed. I have a comfortable chair with which I couldn’t live without. For about two years together I had to sleep in the chair. Because of the pain in my hip joint and the slight curve I have in my back it was impossible to lay flat. Walking around on crutches hunched over was my life.
Chair it is
The first year that I had to sleep in the chair I was twenty-five, the year where I received my prosthetics. The second year I was thirty-one. My right hip replacement got infected and I had an abscess under my right buttock. Sleeping in a chair using extra pillows to make it as comfortable as possible for me.
Due to the pain I never have been such a good sleeper. Five to six hours is a regular night for me. I do have some nights where I get to have a normal rest. Six hours and above. But let's just say that’s one in ten. I would love to have more normal nights again. No more waking up in the middle of the night just to change position. No more usage of extra pillows. And no more getting up and trying and go back to bed one hour later.
Work and rest
When I got off from work the chair was always my go-to, hopefully being able to have a short nap. And getting enough energy to do some house chores in the evening or to do some fitness. But to be honest most of the days I was just stuck in the chair for the rest of the day. Not even having enough energy to cook a healthy meal. Having a disease like AS takes such a huge toll on your life. To not even have the energy to take good care of yourself. It has been a huge fight for me from that point to where I am now. Step by step I took my life back. Fighting through the pain. I became stronger and had less and less pain and discomfort from my disease.
Now we have a beautiful community of people with their own experiences. Through struggle, we had to find out what works for us. Maybe we can all share some of our experiences with how we sleep. I am sure that by sharing our experiences we can help others.
Has changing your diet helped manage your pain and flares?