Sleeping With Your Legs Elevated: Is It a Bad Idea?

Last Updated on July 10, 2024

by Marc Werner, Founder - GhostBed

If you’ve ever taken a wrong step and injured yourself, you probably know to elevate your ankle to prevent swelling. Perhaps you’ve gotten into the habit of sleeping in a chair or on a couch with your legs propped up, just because it feels comfortable.

Whatever the case may be, there’s a common misunderstanding about sleeping with your legs or feet elevated. Is it bad, or even dangerous? Here, we’ll put this myth to rest.

A couple sleeps with their legs up on a GhostBed mattress.

Is It a Bad Idea to Sleep With Your Legs Elevated?

We’re going to cut to the chase: sleeping with your legs and feet up is NOT dangerous. In fact, sleeping elevated is a smart move, for many reasons. Not only does sleeping with your legs elevated help with spinal alignment, it provides a whole host of other health and lifestyle benefits too.

But first, why would this even be a question? Here are some of the most common concerns people have about sleeping with their feet up:

  • One worry is it can reduce circulation to the legs and feet. The fact is, sleeping with your feet up actually increases circulation. If you feel your legs getting numb or a lack of blood flow, simply lower your feet for 20 minutes and prop them right back up.
  • Some people worry about cramping. Sleeping with your feet up can cause the muscles in your calves and feet to become tense, leading to cramping or discomfort. This is a rare occurrence.
  • Finally, you might be concerned if you have an underlying medical condition, such as varicose veins. Could it make your symptoms worse? Not typically—most customers report an improvement in their symptoms.

Note: Always consult with your doctor If you're concerned about any of these situations before changing your sleep routine.

The Health Benefits of Sleeping with Your Feet Up

The position you sleep in has a significant impact on your health. For example, experts agree that sleeping with your legs propped up can help to reduce swelling and inflammation in the lower legs. This is because gravity pulls fluids downward. Elevating your legs helps to encourage fluids to flow back toward your heart.

Bonus: If you’re doing some last-minute back-to-school shopping, most GhostBed orders ship within 24 hours!

Sleeping with your legs elevated can also:

  • Prevent lower back pain, by taking pressure off your joints as you sleep
  • Help improve your circulation
  • Help prevent blood clots and deep vein thrombosis

For more on the health benefits of this sleeping position, take a look at our guide.

Getting Into the Position

Now that you know that sleeping with your legs and feet up isn't dangerous, you might be wondering how to get those toes closer to the sky. While you can certainly use a stack of pillows to prop your legs up, using an adjustable power base makes this position even easier. With one touch, the GhostBed Adjustable Base elevates your legs to a comfortable position that can help you fall asleep quickly.

GhostBed Adjustable Bed Base.

GhostBed Adjustable Base

Relax and put your feet up (literally) with the luxury GhostBed Adjustable Base. Enjoy independent head and foot adjustability, massage settings & more.

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Marc Werner - Founder, GhostBed

Marc Werner

Founder - GhostBed

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Marc has spent the last two decades designing & manufacturing mattresses and other sleep products, drawing on a lifetime of experience working with the material sciences. With several patents to his name, he works closely with the GhostBed team to create products with the perfect balance of comfort & support. Learn More

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