If you suffer from aches and pains in your back and neck, a comfy night’s sleep can be a great relief, but studies have shown that your pillow could actually be making things worse.
Not only do pillows act to prop up your head and neck to ensure that they are correctly aligned with the rest of the body, but they also help for feel comfortable and pain free so that you can get a good night’s sleep which can aid your recovery.
Getting a suitable pillow can be a crucial part of treatment for neck pain, and while it may be the ultimate answer, you’ll certainly notice the difference.
However, there are a lot of different types of pillows and fillings out there, and it can be difficult to know where to begin, so we’ve taken a look at some of the best options out there and offered a few tips to take into account when buying your next pillow.
Memory foam pillows are designed to follow the contours of the body, providing support in the key areas, and have recently become very popular.
When buying a memory foam pillow its important to check exactly what filling is being used as some of the cheaper ones may consist of partly foam and part sand.
It’s important that you find a proper memory foam pillow as these conform to your body shape and posture as you move through the night.
For more information on memory foam and how it works, check out this article.
These foam based pillows are also sometimes known as cervical pillows and are made from similar foam to memory foam.
They normally have four sections and range from narrow to wide, this means you can rest your neck in any way you wish.
They are particularly good for treating whiplash injuries arthritis and back pain and are recommended for not just those who already suffer from neck pain but also those who wish to avoid it.
Latex provides one of the firmest pillow types available. Unlike memory foam it will bounce back immediately into shape as opposed to reacting to the contours of the body.
However, latex is cooler and more airy than memory foam and is also useful for allergy sufferers as it resists dust mites.
Match your pillow to your sleeping position
Seeing as your pillow needs to keep your head and neck neutrally aligned with your body, its important to think about which way you’ll be facing when you do sleep.
- If you sleep on your back, you’ll want a thinner pillow so that your head isn’t being tilted up on too much of an angle.
- If you sleep on your side, you’ll need a thicker pillow to support the space between your ear and shoulder. You may also find it helpful to use a body or knee pillow which will aid with spine alignment by preventing your knees from coming together.
- If you sleep on your front, you may not even need a pillow for your head, although one under your stomach may be a good idea to support your lower back.
While ultimately the best pillow is going to be personal to you and you sleeping position, we recommend something like theSilentnight Pocket Springback Pillow which comes with 28 individual sprung pockets which are nested in memory foam layers to help keep your neck and spine properly aligned.
If your neck pain is only minor feel free to go and browse any of the above types of pillow and make sure to try them out first to make sure they’re comfy and right for you.
However, if your pain is more severe and chronic, its probably best that you consult with a doctor before buying a pillow.