Best Pillows For Stomach Sleepers
Due to the twisting of your neck and the pressure on your lower back, we do not recommend stomach sleeping. If you must sleep on your stomach, try an extremely thin pillow or no pillow at all. It is better to teach yourself to sleep on your side.
Try ourContourSide Pillowspecifically created for side sleepers. Put another pillow between your legs and hug a third one with your hands. Or try ourDreamweaver Body Pillowa versatile option for shoppers looking for the best pillow for stomach sleepers. With the right pillow, practice and patience, you can transition to being a side sleeper.
Tips For Choosing The Best Pillow For Your Neck
Do you wake up with a pain in your neck? Your pillow may be partly to blame. A poor pillow fit for your preferred sleeping mode can make neck pain worse, contribute to headaches, and more.
The human neck has a wide range of motion, making it prone to injury. The vertebrae in your neck are the thinnest ones in your spine, yet they support the weight of your head, a full 10-11 pounds. Think of a 10 pound bowling ball at the top of your spine. If your neck isnt at rest when youre at rest in bed, a lot can go wrong.
If you have chronic neck pain or want to avoid it, whats the best type of pillow for your head? The aim is to ensure your head isnt leaning too far in any direction. When in bed, it should simply rest on top of your shoulders in a neutral position, like it looks when youre standing up. So what kind of pillow should you use? In this blog, Dr. Bonaventure Ngu of Premier Spine Institute gives five tips for selecting the right pillow.
Other Causes Of Neck Pain When You Wake Up
There are certainly other causes that can also contribute to you waking up with neck pain. In some cases, you may develop a sore neck during the day, too. Some common causes of neck pain include:
- poor posture during the day
- working too long at a computer, or watching television for too long without changing positions
- osteoarthritis in one of the upper spinal joints
- nerve compression caused by a herniated disk or bone spur in your neck
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What Is The Best Sleeping Position For Neck Pain
Two sleeping positions are easiest on the neck: on your side or on your back. If you sleep on your back, choose a rounded pillow to support the natural curve of your neck, with a flatter pillow cushioning your head. This can be achieved by tucking a small neck roll into the pillowcase of a flatter, softer pillow, or by using a special pillow that has a built-in neck support with an indentation for the head to rest in. Here are some additional tips for side- and back-sleepers:
Horseshoe Pillows When Traveling
When youre in a car, plane, or train, a horseshoe pillow is a great support for your neck. If you have issues with neck pain, dont let your head droop to the side when you sleep on the plane. Make sure your neck is supported.
To learn more about how to sleep well, or if you have neck or back pain that keeps you from living life to the fullest, call or book an appointment online with Premier Spine Institute.
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Improper Or Uncomfortable Mattress
Do you have a lumpy old mattress that dips down in the middle? While this may seem comfortable, its time to toss it out! We spend about a third of our lives in bed sleeping, which is why it is crucial that you invest in the right type of mattress to help you prevent or at least manage your neck and shoulder pain. When your spine is not aligned properly because of your lumpy or sagging mattress, you are setting yourself up for neck and shoulder pain.
Why Do I Sometimes Wake Up With A Stiff Neck
It is not uncommon for people to go to bed symptom-free, only to wake up in the morning with an aching neck or back. This type of nighttime-acquired pain can arise due to an unsupportive pillow, a poor sleeping position, or a sudden movement.
Although pillows are intended to support the spine in a neutral position, they can cause symptoms such as a stiff neck when they lack support. Even if your pillow feels comfortable, it may not be an appropriate pillow for minimizing or preventing neck pain. To help support your neck, it may be best to avoid a feather pillow or regular foam pillow, and instead choose a contoured latex, foam, or polyester pillow.
Additionally, recent studies confirm the connection between sleep posture and waking with a stiff neck or an aching back. To help prevent the development of neck or back pain during the night, try sleeping on your side. In studies, the side-sleeping position was found to be the most preventative of spinal symptoms, such as neck pain, while stomach sleeping was most likely to cause spinal pain. Stomach sleeping is believed to induce pain because it places an increased load on spinal tissue.
Prior injuries like whiplash can cause neck pain, and the pain can worsen during the night. An aching neck or back may also be caused by sudden movements, such as myoclonus , a brief involuntary twitching or jerking of a muscle or group of muscles, including neck muscles.
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Pillows Can Derail Cpap
For people who have sleep apnea a condition in which you stop breathing periodically during sleep pillows can interfere with continuous positive airway pressure treatment. CPAP keeps your airway open by means of a bedside device that pushes air through a mask you wear while you sleep. “If you’re a side sleeper, the pillow can knock the mask off,” says Dr. Epstein.
Key Features In Quality Pillows
Pillows are getting more innovative by the minute and now you can shop for pillows to suit your every need. Here are some key features you should look out for in buying your next pillow:
- Adjustable Loft – Adjustable loft pillows are a great choice if you’ve found yourself sensitive to the height of your pillow in the past. They give you the ability to make adjustments to tailor your pillow’s comfort and support. Adjustable loft pillows like our #1 and #2 choice are also great if you can’t see the pillow in person or you’re buying online.
- Cooling – Most of us don’t like to sweat while we sleep. Many quality pillows are already designed to reduce or prevent sweating but some pillows are designed exclusively for those of us that are hot sleepers.
- Washable – While most pillows are washable make sure you confirm. Always follow the washing instructions but washing your pillow can extend its life and help re-fluff the material inside.
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What The Research Shows
If you rely on research to guide your choices, you wonât find much agreement on neck pillows. One review of five studies, published in 2006, concluded that there wasnât enough evidence to recommend them for neck pain.
One study, published earlier, compared the effects of water-filled pillows, roll, and standard pillows on sleep quality. This research found that a water-filled version lessened morning pain and made for better rest than a roll pillow or standard model.
Yet another study found that a roll-shaped pillow noticeably improved chronic neck pain.
Keep in mind that nobody — not the people in these studies, nor your friends and family — can know what will work best for you. If your neck aches in the middle of the night or you wake up with stiffness and pain, it might help to try some kind of neck pillow.
American Association of Neurological Surgeons: âCervical Spine.â
Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics: âNeck support pillows: a comparative study,â âBefore/after study to determine the effectiveness of the align-right cylindrical cervical pillow in reducing chronic neck pain severity.â
Harvard Medical School: âIs your pillow hurting your health?â âSay âgood nightâ to neck pain.â
Journal of Chiropractic Medicine: âShape design of an optimal comfortable pillow based on the analytic hierarchy process method.â
National Sleep Foundation: “How to Pick the Right Pillow for You.”
Best Pillows For Side Sleepers
If you are a side sleeper, a firm pillow is your best choice. Select one that helps to bridge the distance between your ear and your shoulder. To allow more comfort, encourage proper alignment of your spine and prevent rolling on your stomach, you may want to add a pillow between your knees.
OurContourSide Pillow is specifically created for side sleepers. It combines the shape-conforming benefits of a memory foam contour pillow with a unique airflow system to improve your breathing. It helps with proper spinal alignment, neck comfort and head support.
What Pillow Materials Are Best For Neck Pain
The best pillow for neck and shoulder pain is firm enough to hold the head at a healthy angle, but soft enough to alleviate pressure points. Most sleepers find success with either a memory foam, latex, buckwheat, or feather pillow, as these materials offer the best balance of support and pressure relief.
Take A Hot Bath Or Shower
A hot bath or shower is a great way to loosen tight muscles and ease neck pain from sleeping wrong. A soothing bath or shower can also help you relax and prepare your mind and body for sleep. If you suffer from insomnia or sleep disorder, enjoy a hot bath or shower to destress and relax every muscle.
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What Causes Neck Pain
Around30%of people suffer from neck pain every year. Neck pain can be caused by stress, diabetes, and minimum range of motion for long periods of time. If you already have neck pain, then finding a pillow that can mitigate that will be important.
Neck pain can also be caused by age and diseases, such asdegenerative disc disease. Unfortunately, the older you get, the more susceptible you’ll be to such infirmities. Sleeping with good posture is an excellent way to avoid neck pain, and other back pain, altogether. This is called neutral alignment, which is keeping your back straight while you sleep.
However, sleeping with good posture will only get you so far if you’re sleeping with the wrong pillow. Asleep studyhad concluded that poor quality of sleep and waking up with a stiff neck were attributed to poor pillow choices.
Best Pillow For Neck Pain For Side Sleepers: Tempur
Side sleepers might have an easier time when it comes to pillow selection for combatting neck pain. Again, height matters a lot for keeping the head relatively elevated, and a slight curve keeps everything in flow. This squishy, memory foam Tempur-Pedic pillow is a great option for those who need a little extra oomph and a lot less achiness.
Shop Now: Tempur-Pedic TEMPUR-Neck Pillow, $89 for small, $99 for medium, $129 for large
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The Benefits Of A Cervical Pillow
A cervical pillow can provide relief for neck pain by aligning the spine. The key to a successful pillow is that its not too firm or too soft. A firmer pillow will keep the head in place while being less comfortable, while a softer pillow will not provide enough support for the neck. When looking for an orthopedic cervical pillow, you want one that suits your needs and is comfortable. The first step is to determine what kind of pillow you need. Cervical pillows can be purchased in three different sizes: small, medium and large.The size of the pillow is determined by your head size and neck circumference. The next step is to determine which type of material you want. There are two basic types of cushioning that you can use on a pillow. The most popular is memory foam, which has been used for more than 30 years in the medical industry. This material is quite versatile, and you can purchase different shapes of this pillow depending on your shape and your needs. Memory foam is in many cases preferred over materials like shredded foam and polyester because it provides much more support.
Why Use A Pillow
Pillows have been used throughout history to support the head when reclining and sleeping. Pillows have been made using many different materials over the ages. Having a pillow, regardless of the material it is made of is better than not using one at all. Even a hard, uncomfortable pillow will keep your head supported and neck in better alignment. I would rather use a rock than have my neck hanging. Maybe thats where the term, sleeping like a rock comes from. If you try sleeping without a pillow, you can see how uncomfortable this is. It may not be too bad on your back, but on your side, when the shoulder is involved, it can lead to disaster for the neck. Unfortunately, side sleeping is the most popular position, so good cervical pillows can really help.
If you are reclining, your head and neck are at the mercy of the chair you are sitting. Ever see someone falling asleep in a chair without a headrest? Looks like whiplash! So, even reclining and relaxing without good head support can lead to falling asleep with harmful head and neck posture. Sometimes, your head can turn all the way to one side, overstretching one side of the neck and contracting the other. So, for sleeping, napping or snoozing, you need proper support from a pillow.
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Know When It Is Time To Replace Your Pillow
Did you know that your pillow can be the main cause of your allergies and neck pain?
As a pillow ages, it flattens out, contains moisture, and turns into a home to dust, mites, mold, and acne causing bacteria. So its crucial to change your pillow after a certain period of time. It is also important to understand that each pillow has a different lifetime.
Lets go over the signs to look out for to replace your old pillow.
Pillows For Neck Pain & Headaches
Do you wake up in the morning with neck pain and a headache? Are there really pillows for neck pain that can help?
This can be a sign that you have been sleeping with your neck in a harmful position. Since there are muscles that go from the head to the neck and blood vessels as well as nerves that go from the neck to the head, having slept with your neck in an unnatural posture can also lead to annoying headaches.
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Why Is It Important To Choose The Right Kind Of Pillow
Choosing the right pillow is important as you spend one-third of your lifetime sleeping. A study conducted in 2008 shows that supportive pillow, when combined with regular exercise can help in reducing chronic neck pain better than hot or cold compresses, massages and other methods.
People who use feather pillows should change it every year or once in two years. A memory foam pillow needs to be changed when you begin to experience pain or discomfort. Also, it is important to regular wash your pillows. This is especially important for people with allergies and asthma. Dry pillows on high heat after washing. It will help in killing dust mites.
Successfully Manage Neck Pain From Sleeping
Sleeping in a spine-supporting position and choosing the right pillow can help prevent neck pain from occurring. However, if you wake up with a stiff or aching neck, your pain can be minimized or alleviated by following some simple tips. If your neck pain continues or becomes chronic, discuss it with your healthcare professional to find ways to effectively manage it.
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