Well, there’s stress (meaning tension or pressure exerted on a material object) and then there’s stress (emotional pressure or strain). Since we know that the physical pressure or tension on the spine is low when lying down, could emotional strain be contributing to pain at night?
Perhaps. Nighttime is when you are less distracted and it’s easy to focus on pain. Night time is when your brain starts to resolve all the problems of the day, the week, the month, heck, a lifetime. But not in the way you do when you’re awake. During sleep the “logical” frontal cortex is quiet, and the “emotional”, limbic brain activity is disinhibited. You tell your boss off in your dreams. You have nightmares of destitution from the comfort of your own bed. Fears you can talk yourself out of when you’re awake, become more vivid. And those things can interfere with a good night’s sleep.