All pillows are not the same. In other words, there are specific pillows for specific people, and sleeping positions. It is absolutely essential that you choose the best pillow, because your sleep may be interrupted otherwise. Psychologist James Maas, Ph.D. says 75% of people in the US are suffering from sleep disorders now. James is the author of “Power Sleep”, which has been published by Harper.
Many factors can keep you awake at night, and a wrong pillow is one of the major ones. According to the findings of a study, 60% women report that physical discomfort affects the quality of their sleep three times at least in a week. This extensive study was conducted by the National Sleep Foundation. Poor sleep won’t just give you blurry-eyes in the morning, there can be many other serious health consequences as well, such as increased risk of heart attack, stroke and hypertension to just name a few.
So how do you choose a pillow for your sleeping position? Here are a few pointers to help you make the correct decision.
- If you sleep on your back, then choose a pillow that supports your body’s lordosis of your cervical spine, or the natural curvature. There should be adequate support below your shoulders, neck and head. Make sure that the height of your pillow is always lower than a side sleeping pillow.
If you have back strain, then place a second pillow beneath your knees. This will flatten your lumber curve and ease some pressure on your facet joints that are at the back side of your spinal column.
- If you sleep on your side (which should always be the preferred position because it is the healthiest, as proved by many scientific studies), make sure that there is adequate support for your neck and head. Your spine needs to be in a natural and straight horizontal line. You will need a thicker pillow if you sleep on your side.
Go for a side sleeping pillow, because this gives you back and neck the support they need.
- Your spine will be in its natural position if you keep your knees bent and place a second pillow between them. In the absence of support between your legs, your upper leg might rotate downward, and this will pull your pelvis and distort your spine’s natural line. You can prevent this from happening if you keep a pillow between your knees. But make sure that it is firm.
- But what if you are a combination sleeper, which means that you keep changing the position during sleep? Most of us are like that. Before you decide this, try to find out whether you are primarily a back sleeper or side sleeper. Though we change positions, but there will still be one dominating position.
Always select a pillow that is higher, if you are mostly a side sleeper, and choose one that is lower if you sleep mainly on the back. You may also select a pillow that has different fillers mixed in it, like the buckwheat hull pillow. One all-purpose pillow may not be the best thing for you. It’s likely to be too low or too high.