Monday, August 15, 2022
HomeHealthIs It Better To Sleep With Or Without A Pillow

Is It Better To Sleep With Or Without A Pillow

- Advertisment -

Does Sleeping Without A Pillow Can Prevent One From Snoring

What’s the Best Way to Sleep? With or Without a Pillow? – Dr Mandell

Sleeping without a pillow is not a solution you should be trying if your aim is to stop snoring. This may even worsen the problem since lying flat will cause the air passages to be partially blocked, which is a major cause of snoring. To prevent yourself from snoring, try other solutions.

Sleeping without a pillow has many advantages, and it is only those who suffer from glaucoma, snoring and who like to sleep on their sides who should think twice about this sleeping style since it will only worsen the situation for them. For everyone else, it will improve your quality of sleep and life in general.

Also Read:

Sleeping On Your Back

If you sleep on your back more often than not, a thick pillow may bring the head too far forward. Imagine spending the whole day with your chin almost touching your chest. Youd have to be doing a kind of evil up-stare at everyone just to look them in the eyes!

Thats the sort of equivalent of your head resting on a thick pillow when sleeping on your back. Its not quite in the right place, and can actually cause more pain than it relieves. The exception is if you use a thin pillow that keeps your head in a neutral position – not tilted forward.

Sleeping With a Pillow:

  • Choose a thin pillow to keep your head in a neutral position.
  • A memory foam or indented pillow can help cradle the head to keep it comfortable.
  • A thicker pillow could cause neck pain.

Sleeping Without a Pillow:

  • If you have a particularly hard mattress, the back of your head may hurt!

What Is The Healthiest Way To Sleep

In most cases, sleeping on the right side is the healthiest sleep position. Right side sleeping helps pull the heart to the center of the chest, reducing pressure on the heart and lung to prevent palpitations and shortness of breath.

However, pregnant women should rest on their left side because right-side sleeping can reduce blood flow to the fetus.

Read Also: How To Stop Husband Snoring

No Pillow = Bad Posture For Most People

Generally speaking, sleeping without a pillow is bad for overall posture. Pillows were created to help keep your spine aligned, and by choosing not to use one, you’re not getting those benefits.

If you’re sold on sleeping on your stomach, using a pillow under your head might not be a great choice, but you can put the pillow under your pelvis and stomach instead. By putting the pillow here, you raise the lowest parts of your body, so they’re more aligned with where your head is. This puts your spine in a more neutral position and can help relieve pressure.

In any other sleeping position, opting to not use a pillow isn’t ideal. If you’re a back or side sleeper, make sure you use a pillow.

Specialty Pillows For Neck And Shoulder Pain

Sleeping With or Without a Pillow

Beyond standard rectangular pillows, there are countless pillow designs specifically for neck and shoulder pain relief.

Travel Neck Pillow

Travel neck pillows are horseshoe-shaped and provide neck support when youre traveling and cant really lie down. The pillows prevent the head from curving towards the chest or shoulders when sitting upright, triggering a stiff or sore neck.

Cervical Pillows

Also called a rounded pillow, cervical pillows support your head and neck, minimize neck and shoulder pain, and promote healthy spinal alignment. Some cervical pillows have arches around the neck and are flatter under the head to maintain the natural curve of your neck. Other cervical pillows contour around the neck to hold it in place and keep the neck and shoulders aligned with the spine.

Wedge Pillows

Wedge pillows support your upper body and help you sleep at an incline, reducing issues including acid reflux, obstructive sleep apnea, and neck and shoulder pain. Wedge pillows are exclusively for back sleepingyour spine is thrown out of alignment when side or stomach sleeping on a wedge pillowand reduce pressure points on your neck and shoulders.

Body Pillows

Most body pillows are rectangular, but another viable option is a U-shaped body pillowa large pillow with two long arms you lay between. U-shaped pillows are larger and pricier than rectangular body pillows, but they hold you in place and provide support.

Also Check: Does Co Sleeping Cause Separation Anxiety

Are You Frequently Experiencing Neck Or Back Pain

If you answered yes to this question, its possible that you are sleeping each night in an awkward position. It is important to choose a pillow that is at the perfect height for your unique neck and spine. With so many options on the market, this can sometimes be an arduous task.

For a little help with determining which pillow would be best for help with neck pain, you can consult our recommendations. For those with back pain, its a good idea to take a look at your particular sleeping position. If you are a side sleeper, then you might be an exception to the one pillow rule.

Back Sleepers: Should You Sleep Without A Pillow

When a back sleeper lies down on an innerspring or firm mattress, small gaps naturally develop between the lower back and the mattress, as well as the between the neck and the mattress. Memory foam and contouring mattresses address the space between the lower spine, letting the hips sink deeper down into the mattress as the memory foam hugs the lower back.

But theres still a space between the neck and the mattress surface. Sleeping without a pillow leaves an uncomfortable space as the back sleepers head sinks down into the mattress. A too-thick pillow creates the opposite effect, uncomfortably tilting the head forward and the chin into the chest.

For back sleepers to keep the neck level with rest of their spine, a thin, contouring pillow rises to the occasion, filling the space as needed. Cervical pillows, rounded pillows that support the neck, or pillows with built-in neck support and divots for the head are all good options. Additionally, a small pillow beneath the knees or a thin pillow beneath the lumbar spine can both relieve strain on the lower back.

The bottom line: Back sleepers should NOT sleep without a pillow, unless they have lower back pain and use a firm mattress with very little contour .

Read Also: How To Get Rid Of Anxiety Sleep

One Pillow For Stomach Sleepers

This sleeping position is never recommended, but youll ultimately fall asleep and stay asleep in the position that is most comfortable for you. If you happen to be a stomach sleeper, then one thin pillow is the best option . The less angled your neck and back are, the better for your overall health.

What Position Do You Usually Sleep In

Sleeping Without A Pillow: Is It Good Or Bad?

If youre a side sleeper, this alone could be the reason for your neck pain. It may be muscle memory for you to turn over and fall asleep like that without even feeling a hint of pain. But by the time morning comes, your necks been twisted for the whole night!

The same is true for stomach sleepers. If you sleep on your back, the thickness of your pillow is what matters.

Recommended Reading: Do All Snorers Have Sleep Apnea

Change Your Head Angle Slowly

Drastic changes can actually increase pain! Its best to take it slow and allow your body to adjust. Dont just go from a thick pillow to none – your neck muscles may not know whats hit them!

Go from a thick one, to a thinner one, then an almost-not-even-there pillow, and then to no pillow. Take a few days to get used to each before changing again! This adjustable pillow would be a great tool for you!

It May Benefits Your Face

A lot of people suffer from acne or wrinkles and never have an idea that it can all be caused by a bad pillow or sheet. When we sleep, we press our face on the pillow and drag it across the pillow as we change the sleeping position.

Such sleeping hygiene can result in our skin not being able to breathe or hydrate. As a result, our face may feel sweatier, greasier, and more oily because our pores get clogged with dust or other dirt.

However, keep in mind that removing the pillow at times may not be enough if you dont sleep on a clean, silky, or cotton sheet.

A lot of people advise that the silk retains less dust and thus is safer and healthier for stomach sleepers.

Don’t Miss: Is Deep Sleep Better Than Rem

Is It Better To Sleep With One Pillow Or Two

If your answer to “Should I sleep without a pillow?” is a yes, then the next question is how many pillows should you use?

Most people should sleep with one pillow because this gives the appropriate amount of elevation and relief to the back while sleeping.

However, those who suffer from a breathing or sleeping condition such as sleep apnea may be advised by their doctors to use two or more pillows.

If you have this type of condition, talk with your doctor about the best sleeping position for your body.

What Is The Best Pillow For Sleep Apnea

Sleeping Without A Pillow: Benefits, Drawbacks &  Is It Bad ...

Those with sleep apnea should rest on a wedge pillow with a 35 to 45-degree angle. With the upper body elevated, the soft tissue at the back of the throat falls forward rather than backward, preventing airway obstruction. When breathing is easier, sleepers are less likely to experience symptoms of sleep apnea.

Don’t Miss: Could Sleep Apnea Kill You

Bad For Side And Back Sleepers

As mentioned above, if the only position you can sleep in is back or your sides, sleeping without the pillow may bring you more bad than good.

Because of such odd positioning, you may end up sleeping in an unnatural position which will lead to waking up in pain in discomfort. Were not saying that you need to stack super-heavy pillow or use multiple pillows, but find the perfect balance that will suit those sleeping positions.

Is It Better To Sleep Without A Pillow Or Can You Keep Using A Pillow To Sleep Comfortably

Many have heard similar ideas when it comes to sleeping with pillows.

They have heard that pillows can cause back pain and long-term issues, but most people cannot imagine sleeping without pillows.

They wonder about the same thing: Should I sleep without a pillow to improve my health?

There are pros and cons when you sleep without a pillow, and there really isnt a one-size-fits-all answer to the best sleeping arrangement.

You also need and combine it with other solutions such as a sleep mask.

Lets learn more about why and how pillows can be detrimental, what you can do about it, and how you should proceed to get the best sleep possible.

Don’t Miss: Which Is Better For Sleep Nyquil Or Zzzquil

Okay So How Do I Start Sleeping Without Pillows

Well, were glad you asked! It can be simple to get rid of your pillow permanently. To start, fold a cloth or blanket, maybe even a towel, to give you some height when you are sleepingthis should be slightly lower than the pillow that you are used to using. It is okay if your head is tilted slightly upward.

Then, during the next few weeks, reduce the height of your folded up cloth. Ideally, youll start to be more comfortable as your neck and head are more leveled with your back when lying down.

How To Start Sleeping Without A Pillow

Is It Good To Sleep Without A Pillow? | Benefits Of Sleeping Without A Pillow | Challenge Mantra

The thought of suddenly sleeping on a flat surface may seem intimidating, but there are ways to wean yourself off of a pillow to make adjusting easier:

  • Take Baby Steps: Starting with a thin pillow or folded blanket can give your body time to adapt to a flatter surface.
  • Evaluate Your Sleep Setup: Make sure you have a compatible mattress for your sleep style and body size. A good pillow cant compensate for a mattress that isnt able to support good posture, but a suitable mattress can make sleeping without a pillow much more comfortable and sustainable.
  • Consider Body Pillows: Stomach sleepers often benefit from placing a thin pillow beneath their hips. The pillow lifts the midsection and helps encourage a straighter spine.

Also Check: Where To Apply Essential Oils For Snoring

Support Your Body With Pillows

Stomach sleepings who prefer not to use a pillow should place a thin pillow beneath the pelvis to gently lift the hips and lessen the pressure on the spine.

Although it is not recommended for side and back sleepers to rest without a pillow beneath the head, if you do so, be sure to use other pillows to help support the rest of your body. For example, back sleepers can benefit from placing a pillow beneath their knees to alleviate lower back pain. Side sleepers can place a pillow between their knees to reduce hip pain.

Pillows For Front Sleepers

Front sleepers sleep with their head to the side. Many front sleepers find it uncomfortable to sleep without a pillow. For them, a softer down pillow would be good since they dont need the same level of support as a side sleeper. A very thin or very soft pillow would be ideal.

However, if you are able to sleep without any pillow, then resting your head sideways on the mattress is a healthy way to sleep. It keeps your spine straight and reduces lower back and neck strain. Finally, we come to back sleepers!

Also Check: Does Caffeine Cause Insomnia

Negative Effects On Neck And Back Pain

Without a pillow to support the head, side and back sleepers may experience stiffness or soreness in the lumbar or cervical spine. Referred neck pain from not using a pillow may also contribute to tension headaches.

Even when stomach sleepers dont use a pillow, neck pain isnt necessarily unavoidable. Turning your head to the side can create muscle stiffness with or without a pillow.

How Many Pillows Should You Sleep With

Is It Better For Your Neck To Sleep Without A Pillow?

Stacking several pillows under your head is also a bad idea.

This bendsyour spine in an unnatural position and can cause back and neck pain.

Sleeping with too many pillows can even lead to long-term chronic pain.

If you need to sleep with a pillow, then one supportive pillow should do the job.

Our review of the best pillows can help you find a pillow that offers optimal spinal support.

If youre experiencing discomfort from your pillow being too high, try sleeping without it for a night and see if this feels more comfortable.

Also Check: How To Sleep Faster When You Have Anxiety

Does Sleeping Without A Pillow Help Your Hair

This is a question that many people ask even though, frankly, if you sleep well, the last thing you should worry about is your hair. Then again, hair is vital to feel good about yourself, so anything that might help it is a good thing.

Is one of those things sleeping without a pillow? Probably not, although the type of pillowcase you use might make a difference. The reason why is that cotton absorbs oil, which is naturally present in all hair. If your pillowcase absorbs too much oil, your hair may get frizzy and dried out. Switching to a silk pillowcase is thus a better choice as it doesnt absorb your hairs natural oils.

Can Sleeping Without A Pillow Alleviate Neck Pain

If youre a stomach sleeper, sleeping without a pillow may also reduce neck pain.

When youre on your stomach, your head is turned to the side. Your neck is also extended backward. This puts it at an awkward angle, causing pain and discomfort.

In this position, using a pillow would only increase the awkward angle of your neck. But sleeping without one can minimize the unnatural position while decreasing strain on the spine.

Despite this potential benefit, research is lacking. Most studies about pillows and neck pain focus on the best type of pillow for pain. If your neck hurts after sleeping, talk to a doctor before going pillowless.

Don’t Miss: Can Stress Make You Sleep A Lot

How To Sleep Without A Pillow Step By Step

Are you convinced to get rid of your pillow? If you would like to give a try, just be careful not to make the switch too quickly. The transition to sleeping without a pillow should be more like a marathon than a sprint. Your body is very resilient, but it will need some time to adapt to no longer using a pillow. Here are some effective steps helping to ditch your pillow:

  • Use a folded towel as a pillow for the first few weeks. Start with the towel at the same height of your current pillow. Gradually reduce the height of the towel by unfolding it.
  • Continue to reduce the towel height until you are able to lie flat.
  • Make sure to keep your neck aligned as you reduce your pillow. If you are lying on your back, make sure that your chin is not pointing up towards the ceiling. For some people, it may be helpful to keep a small hand towel folded in half as a pillow to ensure proper alignment. Feel free to experiment to find out what works best for you.
  • Do some physical stretches. As you decrease the towel height, be sure to work on neck and shoulder stretches this will work wonders for you!
  • Sleeping Without A Pillow Can Cause Neck Pain


    If you sleep on your side or your back, a pillow is still recommended. Thats because, in those positions, your neck will be forced into an unnatural position without a pillow, which could cause stress, strain, and pain . Also, without a pillow, the pressure on your neck and upper-back muscle will be tremendous, especially after a few hours in this unnatural position. Thats why, if you sleep on your side or back, a pillow is still recommended.

    Also Check: How Does Sleep Deprivation Affect The Body

    - Advertisment -

    Most Popular

    What Does Insomnia Cause

    - Advertisment -