Your Pillow is Making Your Neck Pain Worse
Life is full of "it's complicated" relationships and situations. The relationship you have with your pillow is one such example. Don't get me wrong: I love my pillow. It's a soft, plush number that keeps my head cozy and comfortable when I go to bed at night—but unfortunately, it isn't doing wonders for my neck pain. While sleeping on the wrong pillow can cause neck pain in itself (and we'll get into how later), poor sleep overall is also linked to chronic neck problems like headaches and stiffness in the morning. So if you're experiencing any of these symptoms in conjunction with your pillow woes, check out this guide on how to choose the right one:
How to Choose the Right Pillow
When it comes to choosing the right pillow, consider your sleeping position:
Side sleeper: Your pillow should be thick enough to support your head in-line with the rest of your spine. Have your partner take a picture so you can see whether your head is being pushed up or drooping lower than the rest of your spine. Avoid
memory foam pillows - the springy material can actually aggravate neck pain. Use a medium fluffy pillow to place under your TOP arm. This helps your shoulders from caving in too far and causing more back & shoulder pain. Also - place a pillow between your legs - ideally this pillow will keep your top knee and foot at the same height as your hip. Yep, 3 pillows is the bees knees for side sleepers.
Back sleeper: Visualize your spine while sleeping on your back. Now think about the dreaded slumpy hunchback, forward head posture we are all dealing with nowadays.
You don't want to sleep with your head pushed forward! So choose a very thin pillow, or better yet, no pillow! Placing a rolled up hand towel in the space between your neck and the bed can be a great way to feel supported as well. Use caution if you are considering the purchase of a cervical pillow - many of these are too thick and are no better than a regular pillow. We do like the pillows with an indented space for your head, like this one https://amzn.to/3hfFwEU
Stomach sleeper: Hate to break it to you, but this is one of the worst sleeping positions. But if this is your comfiest position, we suggest using a thin pillow under your chest and shoulder on the same side you turn your head towards.
If you’re struggling with neck pain and can’t sleep, now is the time to invest in a good pillow. We hope this article has been helpful for you. You might want to try out different pillows before settling on one that works best for your needs, but we think it’s worth it!