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Mattress recommendation for shoulder and back pain?

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by SteveN45, Dec 30, 2017.

  1. SteveN45

    SteveN45 Newcomer

    As I continue to work on my TMS via journaling and reading (Sarno, Schubiner, etc.), I am still having grave difficulty sleeping.

    Due to back pain (fractured vertebra), I can only sleep on my sides, but after a while the shoulders (one of which has a 65% tear of the supraspinatus tendon and the other has already been operated on) get sore and some nights only allow a couple hours of sleep. Quite often I wake up with massive pain in both shoulders.

    Any recommendations on mattresses that would put less pressure on my shoulders?

    I am looking into the "Wave Mattress" by Casper as well as a Sleep Number mattress.

    Thank you (in advance)!
  2. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    During the Chat which just closed, several of us were talking about our successes in getting rid of special devices that supported our pre-TMS diagnoses. So I sympathize with your struggle, but my personal experience is that after I accepted TMS fully, I was able to get a good night's sleep for several nights on even the worst pull-out armchair bed (not even a full-sized sofa bed) with the thinnest and oldest mattress I've ever encountered - because I didn't believe it would affect my sleep.

    Have you tried doing a visualization/meditation about having a pain-free night, before going to sleep? I find meditation difficult to maintain, but when I'm fully-engage, it works.
    SteveN45 likes this.
  3. MindBodyPT

    MindBodyPT Beloved Grand Eagle

    When did you have the vertebrae fractures and the rotator cuff tear? Where you are in your healing stage could affect your pain and positioning. If you are still within the first couple months of these injuries it will be hard to sleep on your side for many hours. If you are further out and having TMS pain from them, Ellen is right. Mattress type shouldn’t have an effect if it’s tms pain. Soft or firm is just personal preference- go to some stores and see what feels good to you.
  4. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle

    Those were actually Jan's helpful and wise comments, though I am honored to be mistaken for her :)

    I go through periods where I believe I need a new, softer mattress. But then I realize that there are many mornings I wake up without any discomfort. If it was the mattress, wouldn't it be a problem every night? Also, I remind myself that there are people in many parts of the world who sleep on the floor every night and they don't have higher levels of chronic pain.
    JanAtheCPA, MindBodyPT and balto like this.
  5. balto

    balto Beloved Grand Eagle

    Ellen, I didn't know mattress exist until I moved to the West. I don't remember anyone in my village have back pain or shoulder pain back then. We all sleep on bamboo mats or straw mats on hard wooden beds.
    JanAtheCPA, MindBodyPT and Ellen like this.
  6. MindBodyPT

    MindBodyPT Beloved Grand Eagle

    Whoops, thank you Jan for the helpful advice! Must be the pregnancy brain :) and agree with those sentiments too, Ellen. I slept on the floor in Japan for 2 weeks when I was visiting and felt pretty darn comfortable!
    JanAtheCPA likes this.
  7. SteveN45

    SteveN45 Newcomer

    The vertebrae fractures are 20+ years old. The shoulder tear is a progressive thing over a few years and has become worse the past few months. I've been reading/journaling for ~1.5 years now and have seen back improvements, but not with my shoulders - although when I originally switched from a firm mattress to a "regular" memory foam mattress it was much easier to sleep (something I did before beginning my TMS recovery journey). That being said, the other posts in this thread make sense, too, as I don't wake up every morning at the same level of pain. The level varies dramatically.

    What works for the rest of you, something line Jan's meditation/visualization?
  8. MindBodyPT

    MindBodyPT Beloved Grand Eagle

    Yeah, sounds like TMS in terms of the back pain since the fractures are from long ago, though don't feel pressured to sleep in a position you don't feel comfortable with! Same with the rotator cuff tear- in chronic version the pain from those would also be TMS. In terms of getting comfortable for sleep, though I don't have this specific issue, I think the meditations are a good option, and all the other TMS strategies outlined in the SEP and Alan G's program. There are a lot of meditations for sleep as well, which could be helpful to get you into a calmer state before bed. Recently i've had a little trouble sleeping due to pregnancy and have used meditation type strategies in the middle of the night to relax in order to fall back asleep, has nothing to do with TMS specifically but just helpful for calming down and easing any discomfort.
  9. wakemeup

    wakemeup New Member

    Sorry for interrupting, but this sounds so familiar. I don't try to reduce your issues, so don't take my facts for your facts, but not getting an uncomfortable sleeping position was definitely a big issue for me during my TMS years.
    Sometimes it was ok, but in bad months I turned and turned. Felt like my arms were always blood deprived. My shoulders just didn't 'lay' good, my neck was always in pain the next morning and the minute I laid down my lower back hurt like hell.
    My physiotherapist told me not to lay on my back or front with my head pointed sideways because that's armageddon for the spine - and showed me a skeleton model twisting the neck. From that day, sleeping sucked even more. And, unfortunately, I got serious problems with my sleeping pattern and since I already had issues with concentration and meditation, I started from basics.
    As for me, these simple things (from this thread) work almost perfectly.

    JanAtheCPA likes this.

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