A good night's sleep helps reduce chronic pain, research says

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KYW Newsradio’s Medical Reports are sponsored by Independence Blue Cross. 

By Dr. Brian McDonough, Medical Editor
PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — Pain is bad for sleep. When we are in pain, we get less quality sleep.  

Pain can wake someone up from a deep sleep, and in many cases it doesn't allow the individual to go through the normal progression of sleep. 

Now, there is a new study from the University of California, Berkeley, which found that if patients are able to get a good night's sleep, this can actually help in the process of healing and reducing pain. 

They found that even minor shifts in sleep and wake patterns are correlated with pain sensitivity. A 2015 National Sleep Foundation poll found two out of every three patients who have chronic pain suffer from recurring sleep disruptions. 

The knowledge that poor sleep intensifies sensitivity sends a message that we need to  find ways to help people sleep and get them through those painful times — essentially breaking down the pain cycle.