How to Sleep Well if You’re Suffering from Tennis Elbow
When your elbow becomes inflamed, it's important to focus on the way that you sleep. There are a few ways you can modify your sleeping habits to reduce inflammation and pain in the joint. Read on for some tips on how to get relief from this condition and get a good night's sleep.
Why Does Tennis Elbow Hurt in the Morning?
Tennis elbow often feels stiffer in the morning. During sleep, muscles and tendons stiffen, and blood flow decreases because you aren't moving around as you do during the day. Your sleeping position may also contribute to nighttime pain, especially if you sleep on the side of the affected arm.
What’s the Best Sleeping Position?
Sleeping on your back with the arms on the side is the best position if you have tennis elbow. This is because this position allows for a more natural alignment of the elbow joint and prevents excess pressure on it.
What Positions to Avoid When Sleeping?
Avoid sleeping on the side of the affected arm or positioning your arm overhead or tucked under the pillow. These positions put the most pressure on your elbow joint, restrict blood flow, and can aggravate your elbow pain.
Other Tips to Improve Tennis Elbow at Night
Sleeping in the right elbow brace is one of the best ways to avoid swelling in your arm. It provides targeted compression to the tendons of the forearm muscles for support and pain relief.
- Pain Cream
You can get some relief from tennis elbow by applying a pain cream over the outside of your elbow each night before you go to bed. Creams containing 0.025%-0.075% capsaicin act as a counter-irritant and relieve joint pain.
Applying heat can relieve pain and promote healing by increasing the blood flow to the affected area and relaxing the muscles surrounding it. Take note however that you should not sleep with a heating pad to avoid skin burns and irritation.
Applying cold at the beginning of inflammation is recommended by doctors. This is because the cold acts as an anti-inflammatory and reduces pain.
Massage can improve circulation, reduce inflammation, and relax the muscles. Apply mild to moderate pressure to the tendon before you go to bed to prepare your arm for sleep.
- Over-the-Counter Medicines
Over-the-counter medications can be a big help if you have tennis elbow. Pain relievers such as ibuprofen and naproxen can take the pain away quickly. However, it’s still best to consult your doctor before taking any medication.
Tennis elbow is a common condition that can cause pain and discomfort. If you're struggling to sleep well at night due to tennis elbow, there are a few things you can do to ease the pain and get a good night's sleep.
You should also avoid activities that aggravate your tennis elbow such as typing or using tools. If you follow these tips, you should be able to get some relief from your tennis elbow and say goodbye to this debilitating condition.