There’s nothing worse than waking up with an aching neck and back. It takes that 6-9 hours of sleep and throws it right out the window! So, what can you do to eliminate pain and have a more restful night of sleep?
Believe it or not, having the proper pillow and sleeping in the proper position can both play a big role in how you feel in the morning. The reason? You want to have good neck and upper back resting posture, the position your body is in while we rest. That is the opposite of active posture which is the position held by our bodies during the day while doing things like sitting at your workspace.
Your neck has a natural curve that can be diminished by your pillow over time if the pillow is too flat or thick. So, the proper pillow is the best way to assist and support your neck’s natural curve.
How do you know if you have the proper pillow?
The proper pillow should allow a space for the skull to sink down into, have a cushion or support that comes up to meet the neck at the curve and be denser on the sides to support side sleeping.
Should you sleep with one or two pillows?
You should only need one pillow if it’s a good one. Two pillows run a higher risk of pitching the neck too far forward and will cause poor posture acceleration. The exception would be if you have a very large shoulder width and need an additional pillow to help maintain the proper shoulder to neck distance while laying on your side.
What sleeping position is best for neck and back support?
Back sleeping is best. This puts the least amount of postural stress on your body.
Side sleeping is a close second best with an additional pillow at the chest to prevent the shoulder girdle from collapsing and a pillow between the knees to prevent the low back and hips from twisting.
Front sleeping is typically a postural nightmare for your neck. When sleeping on your front, you will usually have a preference for which way feels best to turn your neck so that you can breathe while lying face down. If you spend every night for years with your neck turned in one direction more than the other, it will impact your neck muscles and joints.
How do you know if your back and neck pain is the result of how you’re sleeping?
You can pretty well confirm that if you go to bed without any neck or shoulder pain and you consistently wake up during the night or in the morning with pain, then your sleeping posture and/or pillow are definitely not in synch with your body.
If you would like to explore whether taping is an option for you, call us at (203) 580-3232.
Find information here about what to expect during your first visit. Initial visits last one hour so that we have time to thoroughly assess your complaints and determine the best course of action. This initial evaluation helps us to determine the specific cause of your symptoms. From there, we can develop a unique treatment plan tailored to helping you heal as quickly as possible.
Follow us on Instagram, @stamford.spine for more chiropractic tips!