How Sleeping On Your Arm Can Cause Pain & What To Do About It

If you sleep on your side, you likely know this scenario all too well: you’ve been sleeping for hours with your arm wedged underneath your head. Maybe you wake up with a numb arm every once in a while, or a super stiff neck.

According to Bhopal, that’s no coincidence; “Sleeping on your arm can cause shoulder and neck pain by compressing the nerves in the shoulders and misalignment of the head and the spine,” she says. This can lead to that numb or tingling sensation in the arms and hands, and over time, she adds it can also lead to tendinitis in the rotator cuff. (Ow.)

In particular, Bhopal notes those with a history of shoulder injuries or nerve impingement should definitely avoid sleeping with their arm under their head, especially on the side of the injury. 

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