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Can changing my sleep position help prevent leg cramps?

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Sandra Hopkinson
Paula Stuart Product Researcher Updated Date: [Insert Date Here]

Yes, sleep position can contribute to nighttime leg cramps. Adjusting positions may help reduce occurrences:

• Avoid sleeping with legs pointed. Keep legs as straight as is comfortable. Pointing flexes feet which shortens calf muscles leading to spasms.

• Don’t sleep on your stomach as a habit. This plantarflexes the feet for hours putting strain on lower leg muscles.

• Prop pillows under knees while sleeping on back. This slightly bends and elevates legs, taking pressure off calves.

• Sleep on side with legs bent. Draw top leg forward a bit so leg and foot are more parallel to the bed. Use pillows for knee support.

• Use soft foam wedges or bolsters to prop feet in a supported, relaxed neutral position while on back or side. This eases pulling on muscles.

Pay attention to leg positioning habits while sleeping and make adjustments. Supportive pillowing, keeping legs straighter, and avoiding pointed feet/toes helps relieve pressure on calf muscles so they remain relaxed for less night cramps. See your doctor if cramps persist.

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