Knee Brace Sleeping

Sleeping with a Knee Brace - Best Sleeping Support Aids and FAQ

Wearing a knee brace during the day can take a bit of getting used to.  However, sleeping with a knee brace brings on an entirely different set of problems. 

Issues such as:

  • inability to find a comfortable position,
  • restricted blood circulation creating the feeling of a "dead leg", and
  • over heating and as a result excessive sweating.

These are only a few of the common problems people encounter when sleeping with a knee brace. 

In this article we are going to explore some support aids that improve your knee brace sleeping experience. 

We will also explore the most Frequently Asked Questions we receive from our readers about tackling their problems with sleeping in a knee brace. 

Our Recommended Knee Support Devices 

ComfiLife Orthopedic Knee Pillow

PROS

  • ergonomic for comfort while you sleep
  • small footprint so it doesn't impede on your partners bed space
  • one size fits all design for easy purchasing experience

CONS

  • not helpful for individuals who like to sleep on their back
  • can fall out of bed while you move around the bed
The ergonomically designed ComfiLife Orthopedic Knee Pillow is one of our favorite support devices for sleeping with a knee brace.  

As the title suggests, it is a pillow that sits in between your legs to help support the leg on top when you are sleeping on your side. 

It is ideal for those that experience sore or tight muscles when the weight of your top leg lies awkwardly while sleeping.  It helps to align the spine to the natural curves, as well as support the legs and muscles for side sleeping, leaving you to enjoy a restful sleep. 

One of the downsides we experienced while using knee pillows is that due to their small design, they tend to fall out of bed when you move.  This can be slightly awkward when you are restricted in your movement due to your injury. 

Snuggle-Pedic Full Body Pillow

PROS

  • versatile pillow to help support side sleeping OR back sleeping
  • Hypoallergenic with memory foam and bamboo exterior covering
  • one size fits all design for easy purchasing experience

CONS

  • large design which can be cumbersome in a small bed
  • tends to fall out if you move about bed too much

We love the versatility of the Snuggle-Pedic Body Pillow when sleeping with a knee brace. 

It does not matter if you are a side sleeper or you prefer sleeping on your back.  The Snuggle-Pedic Body Pillow will help create a comfortable space for you to enjoy some Z's.  You can cuddle (or spoon) the pillow when you sleep on your side, throwing your leg ontop of the pillow for support and comfort.  Alternatively, if you like to sleep on your back, try using the body pillow directly underneath your knee for support.  By supporting your knee from beneath, you are resting in the knee brace's natural position, helping to prevent your knee brace from cutting off your blood circulation. 

The Snuggle-Pedic has also being thoughtfully designed, with memory foam inside to help shape the pillow to your preference.  As well as a kool-flow technology, that helps to circulate the air in and around the pillow for less odour traps and hygenic purposes.  Finally, it comes with a high-quality bamboo fabric, that is extra breathable and has GreenGuard Gold Certification.  

Rester's Choice - Knee Gel Ice Packs

PROS

  • perfect for knee pain relief
  • reduces inflammation for quicker recovery periods
  • one size fits all design for easy purchasing experience

CONS

  • only lasts for the first half of the night
  • can be a bit bulky with a knee brace AND ice pack

We have touched on the benefits of applying ice to your knee below in the FAQs below - so we will focus more on the product here.  

Rester's Choice Gel Ice Packs is a great option for reducing knee pain while you sleep.  This is especially applicable to those that have just come out of surgery or have recently experienced an injury to the knee.  

With a simple wrap around design held with fully adjustable velcro strips, it makes application of the gel pack nice and simple. All you need to do is wrap it around the knee brace to keep it icy cold and help with the ice compression.  

Unlike other cold packs, Rester's Choice Gel packs only require a couple of hours to achieve the right temperature.  Thankfully the knee brace is able to act as a barrier between the ice pack, as it can actually get too cold to apply directly onto skin. 

We would also like to highlight that you receive TWO ICE PACKS in the purchase, which are backed by the company to last a lifetime.  

Knee Brace Sleeping Frequently Asked Questions

Knee Brace Sleeping questions are one of the most common topics we receive from readers. 

Sleep is one of the most important activities you can do to allow your body to recover and rehabiliate from injuries to the knee.  Understandably, knee braces are not the ideal support aids to sleep with, often causing discomfort and sleepless nights of tossing and turning.  

To help our readers, we have compiled a comprehensive collection of FAQs surrounding the topic of knee brace sleeping experiences.  

Can You Wear A Knee Brace To Bed?

Hopefully by now you should know the answer to this question - YES.  We highly encourage anyone with a knee injury or weakened knees to wear knee braces to bed.  They not only provide support and prevent you from further injuries, it also helps to retain heat to the knee joint for increased blood flow and shorter rehabilitation periods.    

Is it safe to sleep with a knee brace?

Yes - wearing a knee brace to bed is safe, and sometimes necessary.  This is provided that you take the important precautions to ensure you have the right knee brace and equipment for the night ahead of you.  A good start is to look through our recommended knee support devices listed above, as well as our favorite knee braces to sleep in

What should I wear to bed with my knee brace?

We recommend wearing loose fitting pajama shorts/pants to bed for the most comfortable knee brace sleeping experience.  There are many benefits to wearing loose clothing. 

One of the most common grievances for wearing a knee brace to bed is how hot and sweaty your knee becomes.  Wearing loose clothing or short pajama bottoms allows for air to circulate and likelihood of over-heating.

It also allows you easy access to make any adjustments to the brace during the night, with minimal effort.   

Please note, your choice of clothes may be influenced by the climate that you live in. 

What are the benefits of wearing knee braces while sleeping?

The primary purpose of a knee brace is to prevent injury. 

This applies even when you are sleeping - and in many cases it is more important to wear a brace while sleeping.  Unlike when you are awake and conscious of your movement limitations, while asleep you are less aware of your movements and can inadvertently move your knee in the wrong direction, causing further damage.  

What is the Best Way to Sleep With a Knee Brace?

This will differ from individual to individual.  And unfortunately we cannot give you a definitive answer on the "best way" to sleep with a knee brace.  It may sound obvious, but individuals who prefer to sleep on their backs will find side sleeping awkward and uncomfortable, and vice versa.  

If you find your natural sleeping position uncomfortable, try using some knee brace sleeping support aids we listed above.  For example, if you find side sleeping awkward, try using a sleeping pillow to support your leg and knee.  

What are the benefits of ice treatment to the knee while sleeping?

Ice is commonly used to treat and manage a variety of injuries, including knee injuries.

Ice is a form of cryotherapy, or cold treatment, that's often used to reduce inflammation and pain, and to hasten the healing process. However, there are other benefits to using ice, including decreasing the risk of infection, increasing blood circulation and improving muscle strength.

Therefore applying ice to your knee just before going to sleep (or while you fall asleep), helps to reduce the pain you experience.  Along with the other benefits identified above, it means you will be able to fall asleep easier and allow your body to recouperate. 

Final Thoughts on Sleeping with a Knee Brace

The purpose of wearing a knee brace is to prevent injury.  This includes while you are asleep. 

It is important to protect your knee from unwanted movements or positions while you sleep - particularly shortly after surgury or a recent injury.  Wearing a knee brace during sleep will help you achieve this. 

There are many support devices that help to make your knee brace sleeping experience more comfortable and pleasant.  We encourage you to check out our list above of our favorites. 

Finally we hope our FAQ section has been able to answer any questions you have surrounding this interesting topic.  

If you still cannot find the answers you are searching for, feel free to drop your question in the comments section below and we'll get right back to you. 

Happy sleeping! 

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