If you frequently wake up with a stiff neck or a sore back or shoulders, your pillow may be to blame.

The ideal pillow supports you throughout the night by conforming to your head and neck, which in turn alleviates the pressure on your cervical spine. That means waking up well-rested and without pain.

A pillow with the wrong thickness or firmness, on the other hand, can put stress on the vertebrae in your neck and upper back. Discomfort could prevent you from falling —and staying — asleep, or even wake you up in the middle of a deep sleep. Shoulder problems often originate from neck pain, so stabilizing your neck during your sleep is very important!

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