How to Sleep After Cervical Neck Surgery

An article in the August 2009 issue of the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery states that you are likely to notice a significant improvement in your cervical neck symptoms after surgery. Therefore, your decision to choose surgery as a treatment option will likely be beneficial. However, you must follow your surgeon and physical therapist's post-surgical recovery recommendations. After surgery, you should get plenty of rest and follow these guidelines to avoid re-injuring your neck.

Doctor checking a woman's cervical collar Credit: Wavebreakmedia/iStock/Getty Images

Step 1

Wear your cervical collar at all times while in the hospital. Avoid excessive movement of your neck. Keep your head still if your collar is ever opened.

Step 2

Lay on your back while in bed, according to Spine Universe. Turn your hips, shoulders and neck at the same time when changing positions or getting out of bed. Alert your nurse for assistance when moving.

Step 3

Sleep in any position that is comfortable after your discharge. Place a pillow under your shoulders if sleeping in a bed. Sleep in a recliner chair if you find this to be more comfortable than sleeping in bed. Wear your cervical collar as recommended by your doctor.

Things You'll Need

  • Pillow

  • Reclining chair


Always wear your cervical collar as directed to prevent complications. Sleep in a recliner chair if you have sleep apnea.


Never sleep without your cervical collar.

Is This an Emergency?

If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.
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