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How can I get a good nights sleep?

If you’re not sleeping well, think about the reasons behind it. Is it pain and stiffness during the night? Or are you having trouble winding down?

If pain and stiffness during the night are affecting your sleep:

  • Take some painkillers before bed.
  • Have a warm bath or shower to help you relax.
  • Check your mattress is supportive and comfortable. If you decide to buy a new one, you don’t have to go for the most expensive – try before you buy.
  • Use fewer pillows if you have neck pain.
  • Rearrange pillows into a V-shape to support painful shoulders or try a specially shaped neck pillow. These are available from department stores. Although there’s no evidence that they help with the causes of pain, some people find they help to keep the neck in a comfortable position.
  • If your hands are painful, resting splints may help.

If you’re having difficulty winding down:

  • Avoid eating a big meal late in the evening.
  • Avoid drinking tea, coffee or alcohol for a couple of hours before bedtime. Try a hot, milky drink instead.
  • Get into a bedtime routine. Try to go to bed at the same time every night.
  • Do a few gentle stretching exercises, have a warm bath or shower and listen to some relaxing music. Take time for yourself.
  • Make your bedroom a relaxing place with low lighting, relaxing colours and no clutter, computer or TV.
  • Concentrate on your breathing and work through a relaxing technique.

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Our new helpline: Call us for free information, help and advice on your type of arthritis. Open Mon–Fri 9am–8pm.

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For more information, go to www.arthritisresearchuk.org.
Arthritis Research UK fund research into the cause, treatment and cure of arthritis. You can support Arthritis Research UK by volunteering, donating or visiting our shops.