People with arthritis frequently suffer from nighttime pain and insomnia. Joint pain makes it tough to find a comfortable position, and the simple act of lying down in bed can exacerbate pain and stiffness. An adjustable bed—also known as a home hospital bed—reduces arthritis pain and stiffness by providing a safe, convenient, and flexible sleeping environment that adapts to your unique needs.
The Relationship Between Arthritis and Sleep
Arthritis is the commonly used name for a cluster of diseases and symptoms that involve joint pain or joint disease. Other symptoms include swelling, stiffness, and reduced motion in the affected joints. Arthritis is a chronic condition; it tends to worsen with age, but the symptoms may increase and decrease over time.
Unfortunately, insomnia and arthritis tend to amplify each other. Joint pain makes sleep elusive, and sleep deprivation intensifies the symptoms of some types of arthritis. A study conducted at the University of Pittsburgh discovered that lack of sleep leads to greater pain sensitivity and fatigue in rheumatoid arthritis patients.
Let’s look at how an adjustable bed helps people with arthritis to manage the symptoms and get a good night’s sleep.
Support for the Most Comfortable Sleeping Position
The best sleeping position for a person with arthritis depends on the affected joints and symptom severity. It changes during the night as pressure and position cause stiffness and swelling. Many with arthritis rearrange their pillows and bedclothes several times a night in an attempt to find just the right support and pressure distribution to alleviate their pain.
An adjustable bed makes it much easier to find a comfortable and pain-relieving position. The head adjustment gently raises the upper body to provide relief for the neck, shoulders, and upper back. Head adjustments can adopt any position between lying flat and sitting up; they support the exact position that provides the optimal pain relief through the night.
The same is true of the foot adjustment, which supports the lower limbs and provides relief from lower back, hip, knee, and ankle pain.
Modern adjustable beds can also be configured into the zero-gravity position, which combines both head and foot adjustments to evenly distribute body weight and ensure that joints are not subject to excessive strain. On a premium adjustable bed, all adjustments are motorized and remote-controlled, so the bed’s occupant can adjust the position when they need to without getting out of bed.
Improved Weight Distribution
Sleeping position is just one component of comfort. When you lie on a bed, you exert a force on the mattress, and it pushes back against your body. If that pressure is uneven or concentrated in a vulnerable area, it can compress joints and cause pain and stiffness.
The bed and mattress work together to ensure even pressure distribution that adapts to the shape of your body. Mattresses designed for home hospital beds, such as our Supernal Sleep System, are designed to work well with adjustable beds while evenly distributing pressure to maximize pain relief.
Poor circulation causes swelling and inflammation, both of which contribute to joint pain. Medical professionals advise people with circulatory issues and heart conditions to sleep in positions that improve circulation. Often, this means an upper body or lower limb elevation, both of which are made easier and safer with a home hospital bed.
For example, people with circulatory conditions frequently suffer from lower limb swelling when fluids collect in their legs and feet. Swelling exerts pressure on arthritic joints, making them stiff and painful. Raising the feet above the heart with an adjustable bed’s foot adjustment reduces swelling because gravity helps fluid drain from the legs.
Easier Getting Into and Out of Bed
Pain and joint stiffness cause mobility limitations that make it challenging to get out of bed and increase fall risk. Adjustable beds make it easier to get into and out of bed. A remote control head adjustment gently raises you into a sitting position. A height-adjustable bed, such as our Supernal 5, sets the bed’s surface at the perfect distance from the floor, allowing you to stand up without overexerting painful joints.
Additionally, our beds can be fitted with bed rails, and our hospital bed mattresses have specially stiffened edges, both of which provide extra support for when you’re getting into and out of bed.