Hip pain during sleep or when lying down can significantly impact your rest and overall quality of life. This pain can be caused by various conditions, ranging from bursitis and hip arthritis to hip trigger points and lower back pain referral. In this blog post, we’ll explore these common causes and discuss ways to alleviate and manage hip pain to ensure a good night’s sleep.

Common Causes of Hip Pain While Sleeping or Lying Down


Bursitis is an inflammation of the bursae, small fluid-filled sacs that cushion the bones, tendons, and muscles around your joints. When these sacs become inflamed, typically due to repetitive motion or pressure, they can cause pain, especially at night. Hip bursitis, or trochanteric bursitis, is a common form of this condition.

Symptoms of Hip Bursitis:

  • Pain on the outer side of the hip.
  • Discomfort when lying on the affected side.
  • Pain that worsens with prolonged standing or physical activity.

Hip Arthritis

Arthritis, particularly osteoarthritis, is a degenerative joint disease that can affect the hip. As cartilage wears down, bones can rub against each other, causing pain and stiffness. This pain can intensify at night or when lying down due to decreased movement and fluid accumulation around the joint.

Symptoms of Hip Arthritis:

  • Stiffness in the hip joint, especially in the morning or after sitting.
  • Deep, aching pain in the hip or groin.
  • Reduced range of motion in the hip.

Hip Trigger Points

Trigger points are small, sensitive knots in muscles that can cause referred pain to other areas. In the hip region, these points can cause discomfort and make it difficult to find a comfortable sleeping position.

Symptoms of Hip Trigger Points:

  • Localized tenderness or knots in the hip or buttock area.
  • Referred pain that can extend down the leg or into the lower back.
  • Increased discomfort with pressure on the affected area.

Low Back Pain Referral

Hip pain can also originate from issues in the lower back, such as herniated discs or lumbar spinal stenosis. These conditions can compress nerves that refer pain to the hip, creating discomfort when lying down or sleeping.

Symptoms of Low Back Pain Referral:

  • Pain that starts in the lower back and radiates to the hip or leg.
  • Numbness, tingling, or weakness in the affected areas.
  • Pain that worsens with prolonged sitting or standing.

Strategies to Alleviate Hip Pain When Sleeping or Lying Down

Dealing with hip pain can be challenging, but there are effective strategies to reduce discomfort and improve sleep quality.

Positioning and Pillows

Experiment with different sleeping positions to find one that reduces hip pressure. Consider using pillows for support:

  • Side Sleepers: Place a pillow between your knees to keep your hips aligned.
  • Back Sleepers: Place a small pillow under your lower back to maintain spinal alignment.

Heat and Ice Therapy

Heat can relax tight muscles and improve blood flow, while ice can reduce inflammation. Apply heat packs or ice packs to the hip area for 15-20 minutes before bed.

Pain Management

Over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen or acetaminophen can help manage pain. Consult your healthcare provider for personalized recommendations and dosages.


Engage in targeted exercises and stretches to strengthen hip and lower back muscles. Rehab can also help improve flexibility and reduce the risk of further injury.


Hip pain when sleeping or lying down can significantly affect your quality of life, but with the right approach, you can manage and reduce this discomfort. Identifying the cause of the pain, whether it’s bursitis, hip arthritis, hip trigger points, or low back pain referral, is the first step towards effective treatment. By incorporating the strategies mentioned above and seeking professional guidance when needed, you can achieve better sleep and improved mobility.