Following a review of published research on the relationship between vitamin D, sleep, and pain, researchers propose that vitamin D supplementation, together with good nights sleep and hygiene, may offer an effective way to manage pain in conditions such as arthritis, chronic back pain, fibromyalgia, and menstrual cramps.
The review – by researchers from the Department of Psychobiology at the Federal University of São Paulo in Brazil – is published in the Journal of Endocrinology.
The researchers explain that while the role of vitamin D in bone metabolism is well established, there is also evidence emerging that it takes part in other biological processes, such as processing of sensory signals and sleep regulation.
Another link that is well established is that which ties pain to sleep disturbance. What is not clear, however, is how vitamin D fits into this relationship.
In their review, the researchers look at recent studies that examine the links between vitamin D, sleep, and pain. They also suggest that health professionals should consider these associations when recommending treatments for patients with all types of pain condition, including chronic back pain, fibromyalgia, arthritis, and menstrual cramps.
Senior author Dr. Monica Levy Andersen says, “We can hypothesize that suitable vitamin D supplementation combined with sleep hygiene may optimize the therapeutic management of pain-related diseases, such as fibromyalgia.”
She emphasizes the importance of understanding the mechanisms that link sleep, vitamin D, and pain – such as the immunological and neurobiological pathways.
The management of pain is a complex area of medicine that spans a vast range of research and treatments. Pain affects more people in the United States than heart disease, cancer, and diabetes combined.
Pain is the most common reason for U.S. individuals to access the healthcare system, and it accounts for a large proportion of the country’s healthcare costs.
Read the full article: “Vitamin D Supplements and Good Night’s Sleep May Help to Manage Pain“