Without these therapies, there are still many things patients can do to improve their sleep routines that may also influence how they experience pain, said Jean-Michel Brismee, a researcher at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center in Lubbock, TX, who wasn’t involved in the study.
Going to bed and waking up at the same time every day can help, as can eating well, avoiding big meals and caffeine in the hours right before bedtime, and getting plenty of exercise, Brismee says.
“If you have knee [OA], walking may hurt. … So find some activities that do not increase the pain such as tai chi, yoga, and cycling,” Brismee says.
“Do gentle breathing exercises for a couple of minutes while in bed,” Brismee adds. “They can lower the activity of your sympathetic nervous system and improve your sleep.”
- Lerman SF, Finan PH, Smith MT, et al. Psychological interventions that target sleep reduce pain catastrophizing in knee osteoarthritis. Pain. 2017 Jul 31. doi: 10.1097/j.pain.0000000000001023. [Epub ahead of print]