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Sunday, July 21, 2024

The Cervical Pillow: Is it Effective at Reducing Pain and Improving Sleep?

After a long day at work, there is nothing more comforting than laying your head on a nice, fluffy pillow at the end of it. However, is the sleep position you currently have what’s most beneficial for your body and what’s right for you? It may not be the case if you suffer from neck pain or if you wake up with stiff neck muscles. With a neck pillow, you may feel better and be able to sleep better at night. This type of pillow is sometimes called a cervical pillow, since the upper part of your backbone (where the neck is located) is usually referred to as the cervical spine.

In recent research, it has been shown that a pillow that provides good cervical support is beneficial in reducing neck pain and improving sleep quality.

There are different types of neck pillows available on the market today

Many factors play a role in choosing the right pillow for neck pain, including your sleep position, your pain cause, and your personal comfort level. Among the most common types are:

  1. Horseshoe-shaped
  2. Neck rolls
  3. Standard contour pillows — the wavy ones, with a lengthwise indentation for your head
  4. D-core, which has a D-shaped indentation in the middle for your head

Among the many kinds of neck pillows available, there are down pillows, memory foam pillows, cotton pillows, as well as synthetic neck pillows that can draw sweat and heat away from the neck area. Choosing the right material for your pillow is extremely important, but only if it makes you feel comfortable when you are using it. It is generally believed that comfort trumps all, despite materials that keep you cool.

The way you sleep has a significant impact on your health

You can improve your sleep by choosing a pillow style, but your sleep position is also important. Your neck pain will be relieved if you lie on your side or back, while lying on your stomach will make things worse.

Regardless of the position you prefer, make sure your pillow supports your cervical spine’s natural curve.

Stomach sleepers. If you want to keep your spine straight, skip the neck pillow and use a thin one instead.

Side sleepers. Keep your spine straight by using a pillow that provides adequate neck support — one that’s higher under your neck than under your head. In addition to being thick, it should also be firm enough to prevent your head from sinking into it. The latex pillow gives you support, but it doesn’t overheat like memory foam. For this purpose, a contoured pillow is ideal.

Back sleepers. The neck needs support, but it shouldn’t be propped up. You may want to consider a contoured model designed for this position. For your head, you can use a soft, flat one with a roll-shaped one at your neck.

Here are some of the findings that have been found in research

You will not find much agreement on neck pillows when you rely on research to help you make your decision. In 2006, an analysis of five studies found that there was not enough evidence for recommending these treatments for neck pain, based on a review of five studies.

A study published earlier compared the effects of water-filled pillows, rolls, and standard pillows on sleep quality. Researchers found that Memory foam pillows for neck pain and improved sleep compared to roll pillows or standard models.

In addition, another study found that the use of roll-shaped pillows significantly reduced chronic neck pain.

The people in these studies and your friends and family cannot tell you what will work best for you. If you wake up with stiffness and pain in your neck or your neck aches at night, a neck pillow might help.

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