Best Sleeping Positions for Kidney Patients

November 21, 2023

sleeping position on backGetting a good night's sleep is important for everyone. However, it is even more critical for those who are dealing with kidney disease or have kidney-related issues. Sleep disturbances can lead to further health problems for kidney patients. It is essential to find the best sleeping position to avoid putting any extra pressure on the body. In this article, we will explore the best sleeping positions for kidney patients. 

Understanding the Effects of Poor Sleep on Kidney Health

Understanding the effects of poor sleep on kidney health is crucial for maintaining overall well-being. Recent research indicates that poor sleep can impact the development of kidney disease. This may be due to inflammation and increased activity in the kidneys, which can harm their functioning. It is important to prioritize healthy sleep habits to reduce the risks associated with kidney disease and promote optimal kidney health. 

Evaluating Your Sleeping Position and Making Adjustments

Studies have been done to examine the relationship between sleeping position and kidney disease, with some results indicating that side-sleeping and sleeping on your back may be beneficial. Another study found that changing position while sleeping may help prevent the formation of kidney stones. However, the “best” sleeping position will vary by individual, and it is important to pay attention to your own comfort levels as well as recommendations from your healthcare provider.  

  • Sleeping on Your Back: While sleeping on your back is not the best position for everyone, it is highly recommended for kidney patients. This position allows the body to maintain a natural alignment, placing less pressure on the kidneys. However, it is essential to keep your head and knees slightly elevated with some extra pillows.  
  • Sleeping on Your Side: Sleeping on your side is another suitable option for kidney patients. It helps improve blood flow, which can better the kidney functions. It is recommended to sleep on your left side to promote optimal blood circulation which will help reduce the workload on kidneys. Another positive benefit of sleeping on the left side is that it prevents any acid reflux, which is common in kidney patients. 
  • Avoid Sleeping on Your Stomach: Sleeping on your stomach should be avoided if you have kidney disease. This position puts pressure on your abdomen and can disrupt kidney function, leading to poor quality sleep. It can cause breathing and neck problems, leading to aches and pains when we wake up. Sleeping on your stomach strains the lower back and neck muscles, which is not ideal for anyone, especially if you have kidney-related problems. 

Using a Supportive Mattress and Pillows

Apart from sleeping positions, it is important to invest in a supportive mattress and pillows. This can provide the right balance of support and comfort, particularly when sleeping on your side or back. Pillows can also be used to support different areas of your body, like placing a pillow between your legs when sleeping on your side, to keep your spine aligned and reduce pressure on your hips. 

Managing Sleep Apnea

Kidney disease patients are at a higher risk of developing sleep apnea, which can lead to a poorer quality of sleep. Sleeping with sleep apnea can place a burden on the body and kidneys, making it hard for the body to get much-needed oxygen. Sleeping on your side can help reduce obstructive sleep apnea symptoms, and in some cases, it can eliminate the condition altogether. 

Getting a good night's sleep is crucial for everyone, especially kidney patients. It is essential to explore different ways to support the body during sleep to help reduce the likelihood of sleep disturbance or putting any extra strain on the kidneys. It is recommended that if you have any concerns about your sleeping habits or best position to sleep with kidney problems, take advice from your healthcare provider. 


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