The way you sleep at night has a lot to do with the way you feel the next day. Not only is the amount of sleep you get important, but also the position that you sleep in, or your sleep posture. How many times have you spent all day bemoaning a stiff neck because you “slept wrong”? Sleeping in a contorted position can have you sore and achy for days, even if it was comfortable while you slept. The American Chiropractic Association has issued forth two approved sleeping positions for optimum health. Sleeping on your back and sleeping on your side are the only two positions that promote good health. Sleeping on your stomach is not recommended. Not only do bad sleeping positions leave you tired and weak during the day, they can also add to depression, high blood pressure and stomach upset.
Sleeping on your back may not be the most comfortable of all positions, but it is the most beneficial to the rest of your body. It can help retain your youthful glow by minimizing wrinkles and sagging breasts. It also eases the pain of acid reflux. Laying with your head elevated prohibits food from coming back up. With a constant pressure squishing your face, wrinkles appear slower. No added curve is put upon the spine. The pillow you choose is important. It must support year head and neck without placing you head to high and knocking out the perfect alignment of your back. The only issue that should keep you from sleeping on your back would be snoring and sleep apnea. The proper pillow can also help with this condition while sleeping on your back.
Sleeping on your side is not the ideal sleep posture but it less harmful than sleeping on your tummy. Unless you are pregnant, this should not be your go-to sleep position. It keeps your spine stretched out and elongated. Side sleeping contributes to face wrinkles too from spending hours with you face distorted and folded into the pillow or mattress. It reduces instances of acid reflux as well as snoring. It is not a good position to preserve breast health. The breasts hang and stretch in this position. That is why a good quality pillow essential for side sleepers.
Sleeping on your stomach makes it impossible to keep your spine straight. Pressure is applied to joints and muscles which causes nerve irritation, pain, tingling, and numbness. Your head and neck are turned to the side for several hours at a time. This alone can cause a stiff neck and soreness and pain in the morning. Sleeping on your stomach should be done with a thin pillow, no more than 3 inches thick to keep the spine as aligned as possible.
There are some variations of the above positions such as the soldier and the starfish. In both of those positions, you lie on your back with your arms either straight down at your sides or spread out like a starfish. Like all back sleeping positions, it can greatly help acid reflux but also irritate apnea and snoring.
Avoiding sleeping on your stomach will save you a lot of pain the next day. Even if you sleep in one of the recommended positions, it is imperative to have a good quality pillow specific to your needs. Custom measured pillows are extremely helpful for those with back issues and people who have trouble sleeping.
Not many people realize how important correct sleep posture is to the rest of the body and overall health. Once you pay attention and get the correct sleep with the right pillow you will never sleep any other way.