Why You Are Sleeping In The Wrong Position – The average person will sleep about eight hours a day, so that’s a third of your life catching Z’s. If you live to the average age in most developed nations that will mean you’ll spend somewhere close to 10,000 days in bed asleep. That’s more time spent sleeping than you’ll do any other activity, and of course we are not counting breathing or thinking or seeing.
With this in mind, you have to give great respect to this thing we call sleep. Sleep is our great relief, and countless studies tell us if we don’t get enough of it, or get too much of it, there will be negative consequences regarding our physical and mental health. You best make sure you are sleeping right, given how much you do of it, and today we’ll tell you how to sleep well.
Before we get into the advice we’ll tell you that research has shown that quite a lot of people do actually sleep in the wrong position. You might feel like it’s the best way to drift off, but some positions can cause people harm. Some of the consequences of bad sleep positions might be you wake up with pains, sometimes in the neck, sometimes in the back, shoulders or knees.
You might just feel stiff in the morning, a little bit too rigid. But there’s more than that. Some people snore because they are in the wrong position, and while we all let out a few nighttime grunts now and again, snoring can become a problem not only for your health but for your sleeping partner’s mental health.
Your friends might balk at sharing a hotel room with you, too, and if you are especially loud you might annoy people in the same house but not even the same room. Because you are sleeping all wrong you might wake up feeling really tired, as if you haven’t slept much at all, while some people wake up with headaches and according to some experts this might be a pillow problem.
Other problems related to bad sleeping positions can be waking up with heartburn or inflammation in certain parts of the body. So, without further ado, let’s see how to sleep well. First of all, you might know if you’re not sleeping right because you have some of the symptoms we mentioned. You might just feel groggy every morning, or your sleep tracker might be telling you there is a problem.
Not everyone is the same, but we’ll tell you how some positions can cause certain problems. Sleeping on your stomach can be a good thing and a bad thing. One of the problems with this is the fact with a high pillow sleeping on your stomach can cause neck pain. You are basically forcing your neck into a difficult position every night, and this is why you might wake up with pain there quite often.
The obvious solution to this if you’re a habitual stomach sleeper is to get a lower pillow or totally get rid of your pillow. Yes, some doctors say sleeping on your stomach is best done without a pillow. You could at least give it a try. But there’s more. Sleeping this way can make it harder to breathe, because it’s not exactly the most comfortable breathing position.
Ilene Rosen, an associate professor of clinical medicine for the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine in Philadelphia, said that there is a solution. Try not to sleep like a plank for one thing, so bend the knee and elbow. After that, to help more with position put a small pillow underneath that armpit and hip.
You can also take some pressure off your back by putting a pillow under your stomach. Try it, play around with using pillows not just for your head but to support other parts of your body. You might just find you get a much better night’s sleep. As for those head pillows, well, if you are a stomach sleeper or a back sleeper, don’t have them too high.
You only want enough height to keep your spine straight. Have you ever seen those images of Sleeping Beauty sleeping on her back with her head at a steep incline. Well, Miss Beauty no doubt woke up with a terrible neck crick. You don’t need to go too high. So, what about those folks that feel so comfortable sleeping in the fetal position.
Oh, don’t we all miss those cozy days in the womb of our mothers? It’s actually the most popular position, and it’s a good fit for most people. But there are problems, too. It can cause breathing problems which might lead to a bad night’s sleep. One thing you can try if you like to sleep in this position is putting a pillow under one of your legs and hold on to it, as if you are hugging the pillow.
In fact, in many places around Asia people sleep like this all the time except they hang on to something that looks a bit like a sausage. Sometimes they are called sausage pillows. They are not only used for people who like to sleep in the fetal position, but also used to support other parts of the body. Buy one, stick it next to you, and we guarantee you’ll soon be clinging on to it as a form of support and comfort.
Many of the experts tell us that the fetal position with some support can be the best way to sleep. A lot of sleepers, and it’s well documented, have lower back pain because of the way they sleep. Again, one thing you can do to fix this is get some kind of support. To prevent lower back pain you might try sleeping with that support under your knees, in between your thighs, and again if you sleep on your stomach, underneath you.
So, what if you like sleeping on your stomach but not really in the fetal position? The best thing about this is it can help to reduce all that snoring you do. It’s also a lot better for digestion and heartburn than on your back. One study we found, though, said if you want to reduce heartburn and acid reflux you should try and switch sides a lot, at least when you are trying to get to sleep.
Just about everyone anyway says don’t eat a big meal and go to sleep, especially a really fatty meal. It’s not great for your weight, so try and give some space between eating and sleeping. If you’re a side sleeper there might be problems, such as shoulder stiffness or even jaw tightness. Again, another pillow under your body can help this. Side sleepers, like fetal sleepers, can really benefit from having something to hold on to.
Not many people actually sleep on their back, but it does have quite a few benefits including helping with knee pain and hip pain. It’s more of a lying in bed and thinking position than a sleeping position, and manyof us retreat to the stomach or side at some point. The important thing here is to get the pillow height right, since too low or too high will give you neck pain.
It’s also the position that a lot of people do their snoring in. If you are a serial snorer, then try to tell yourself to sleep on your side or in the fetal position. There are other tricks, too, including sleeping with a tennis ball in the back pocket of whatever clothes you sleep in. In the end, there is no magic sleeping position to suit all, but if you are experiencing bad sleep or pains you can just follow some of the advice we have given to you today.
As one doctor from John Hopkins Medicine said about positions, “We could argue that some are better than others. But there are caveats. ”She means what we just said, if you snore too much don’t go for the back, and if you have pains try a different pillow or using support, and if you have heartburn switch to your other side. The left is better, she said.
If you often wake up with your face looking rather mangled, then try not to sleep on your stomach too much. Apparently this can cause wrinkles in the long run. Not much of this matters of course if you have a mattress that has been around longer than you. If it’s out of shape with a kind of dip in the middle it’s going to give you problems.
It’s hard to say which mattress is perfect for you because some sleepers suit hard mattresses more and some suit soft ones more. If it’s cheap and super soft, so you virtually sink into it, it will likely give you some back problems. Soft can be good, but not too soft. It’s the same with super hard. If the mattress doesn’t allow any sinking at all it might lead to stiff shoulders and stiff hips in the morning. You don’t want to be sleeping on a virtual floor.
So, how do you sleep? Have you ever had problems and fixed them? Do you agree with what we’ve said? Tell us in the comments.