Hip Pain at Night

Hip Pain at Night

Do you experience hip pain at night when sleeping? If so, you are not alone. Hip pain at night is more common than people realize. The great news is that there are ways to minimize or eliminate hip pain when sleeping.

What Causes Hip Pain at Night

While you sleep your body gets stiff and many times your joints become swollen due to the inactivity at night. This swelling or pressure on any other underlying hip issues can cause or increase your hip pain at night. Some of the causes of hip pain when sleeping include:

  • Bursitis – Is inflammation of the bursae sacks that are made to protect the hip joint. Bursitis can cause pain in the hip and down the side of your thigh. This can be a sharp intense pain. 
  • Hip Osteoarthritis – Occurs with wear and tear (age). Osteoarthritis is when the cartilage in the hip joint gradually wears away so you are bone on bone. This can be painful not just at night but throughout the day too. The pain can move to the glutes and/or down the leg.
  • Hip tendonitis – You will feel tightness in your adductors or hamstrings along with signs of swelling. Hip tendonitis can be helped with some foam rolling. Read my blog The Best Way to Foam Roll Hip Flexor Muscles
  • Sciatic-piriformis Syndrome – Is swelling of the piriformis muscle causing pain in the glutes and affecting the sciatic nerve which can cause pain or tingling in the back of the thigh and down the leg to your calf or foot.

How to Manage Hip Pain When Sleeping

The number one factor in managing hip pain when sleeping is to find the correct sleep position. The healthiest and most recommended sleep position is side sleeping with either a knee pillow or body pillow. The knee pillow eliminates pressure in the lower back by aligning your spine and body correctly relieving hip pain when sleeping on your side. If you are interest in hip pillows you can read my review of the Top Hip Pillows for Sleeping. My favorite body pillow is the Snuggle-Pedic Memory Foam full size body pillow.  

2 Stretches for Hip Pain at Night

There are many benefits to stretching before you go to bed at night since most of us spend a majority of our lives sitting at a desk or doing the same repetitive action over and over. Stretching at night will help your body increase blood circulation and decrease tension relaxing you to get a deeper sleep.

Perform each of the following exercises for 20-30 seconds 2-3x every night before bed.

Lying Knee to Chest Stretch

hip pain when sleeping on side
  • Lying on your back on the ground with both legs extended straight
  • Pull one knee to your chest as far as possible and tightly hold it there
  • Make sure your lower back stays on the ground by holding a pelvic tilt
  • Stretch both your right and left hip flexor

Lying Cross Body Spinal Twist

hip pain at night
  • Lying on your back on the ground with both legs extended straight
  • Lift your right leg up to 90 degrees
  • Let your right knee lay across your body and put your left hand on your right knee
  • As you apply pressure with your left hand pressing your knee towards the ground you can increase the stretch by turning your head to the right

Foam Rolling for Hip Pain at Night

Gently foam roll every night to loosen your hips and increase your circulation before bed. I recommend two areas to foam roll and that is your Psoas and your Glutes. If you want to learn more about foam rolling your hip flexors check out my blog article Best way to Foam Roll Hip Flexors.

Foam Roll Hip Flexor Muscles (Psoas Roll)

hip pain at night
  • Start by lying flat in a prone (face down) position on your forearms with the foam roller under your right hip only.
  • Begin to roll up and down over your right hip flexor
  • As you roll continue to turn your body outward hitting the hip flexor muscles from different angles and sides
  • Remember if you find “hot spots” stop and just rest and relax into them as best you can for up to 30 seconds to try and release those tight areas.
  • Repeat the rolling on your left hip.

Foam Roll Glutes and Piriformis

hip pain when sleeping on side
  • Start by sitting on your foam roller with your hands on the ground behind you to support yourself.
  • Cross your left leg over your right knee to stretch your glutes and positioning your piriformis to be rolled out.
  • Leaning onto your left glute begin to roll up and down. Then move your body out to the side to side to cover your Glute Maximus, Gluteus Minimus and Piriformis from all angles.

Conclusion

Hip pain at night is miserable but can be alleviated by making a few changes to your daily routine. Your daily checklist to prevent hip pain at nights is to: foam roll, stretch and sleep on your side with a hip or body pillow.

Warning: The reader of this article should exercise all precautions before following any of the exercises from this article and website. To avoid any problems while doing the exercises, it is advised that you consult a medical professional. The responsibility lies solely with the reader and not with the site or the writer.

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