hands of an elder with rheumatoid arthritis

Rheumatoid Arthritis Management: Tips for Better Sleep

When you’re living with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), symptoms such as joint pain, swelling and stiffness could make it hard for you to sleep well at night. The thing is getting adequate sleep is immensely vital for managing RA symptoms.

Moreover, issues with sleep don’t just impact you during nighttime because not having enough quality sleep could make you feel tired in the morning, and in turn, aggravate your pain.
Sleep issues are also associated with an increased risk of developing depression.

Luckily, there are various tactics that can help you get quality sleep. First things first, however, ensure that you follow the pain management protocol recommended by your doctor. Next, explore the tips below to try and make yourself sleep better.

Time Your Medications

Taking your medications close to bedtime could facilitate falling asleep faster and better. One option is an anti-inflammatory pain medication that’s long acting. Although taking prednisone at night help some people sleep better, others experience the exact opposite and find it harder to sleep come bedtime.

That being said, experiment with your pain meds to figure out if a certain time for taking meds will help you with your sleep issues. It’s also a good idea to speak to your doctor if you suspect that your medications are disturbing your sleep.

Make Sure Your Bedroom Is Conducive to Sound Sleep

For most individuals, the ideal room temperature is no higher than 67 degrees Fahrenheit, so experiment to determine your preference. Your bedroom should also be quiet and dark. If noise is an issue, wear earplugs.

You can also consider investing in a memory foam mattress and pillows. If the warranty of your existing mattress has already expired or if your mattress has been around for, say, seven years or more, it might be time get a replacement. Make sure to choose a mattress for sale in American Fork that can really give you support for your achy joints. Finally, opt for soft, light bedding since a heavy blanket could place unnecessary pressure and weight on your already aching joints.

Moving During the Day

Aside from benefitting overall health, exercising regularly can also increase your chances of sleeping more deeply at night. Physical activity can reduce pain perception and boost the quality of your sleep. Just refrain from exercising near bedtime since being active around that time will energize instead of calm you and prepare you for restful slumber.

Daytime Strategies

woman waking up in her bedroom

Getting sufficient sleep is very critical for RA management, and you might need to do some trial and error to figure out the most ideal sleep routine so that you can get the sleep you desperately need.

If the suggestions above are not enough to get you ample shuteye, consider making adjustments during the day. For instance, you can take power naps of no more than 20 minutes. You can also make some changes at work, such as delegating some of your tasks whenever possible so you can save your energy.

Now, if you have tried absolutely everything you can and you are still not getting enough sleep, it’s time to consult your doctor. Your treatment might need some adjustments, or you might need to be screened for a potential sleep disorder.

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