Why side sleepers should place a pillow between their legs while sleeping
Nothing feels so good as coming home after a long day and laying in bed to get a well-deserved rest. But when tiny aches and pains from your neck or back start to make themselves known when you wake up the next day, sleeping is suddenly not the haven you thought it would be. This might be because you’re sleeping the WRONG way.
Sleeping posture is essential for spine health. You’re asleep for (hopefully) 8 hours a day, often in one position for long periods of time. Ignoring the proper way to support your spine during sleep can cause pain, stiffness, and soreness. And nobody wants to wake up with all that!
The key to a good night’s sleep is to keep your spine in a neutral position. Your spine isn’t stick straight; it’s got a natural S-curve that supports balance and stability. When you sleep - whether it’s on the side or on your back - you need to make sure you position your body the right way. You can do this by choosing an appropriate mattress and using pillows to prop up your spine to a healthy curvature.
The Correct Sleeping Posture for Side Sleepers
Sleeping on the side is the most popular sleeping position. In fact, 74% of people sleep this way! If you’re a side sleeper yourself, check if you’ve got the right mattress. Side sleepers need a softer mattress because their hips and shoulders directly hit potentially painful pressure points: hips and shoulders.
To make sure that you are sleeping comfortably, here’s how you should position your body:
Making sure the pillow under your head is thick enough to bring your neck to the same level as your spine.
Placing a firm pillow between your knees and bending your legs to support your lower back, as shown. Make sure that the pillow extends all the way from your knees to your ankles, so that your knees and ankles are in line with each other.
Your hip bones should be stacked directly on top of each other so that your spine remains in a neutral position. Think of your hip bones as headlights that should be pointed forward.
Benefits of placing a Pillow Between Legs
Sleeping on your side without proper support can put the spine in a bent or twisted position. If it stays this way the whole night, it can cause the joint to be stressed. Here are some benefits to putting a pillow between your legs when you sleep on your side:
It adds comfort and eliminates pressure by keeping the knees on top of one another. This ensures that your hips and pelvic area are aligned.
It reduces the stress on the hip as it prevents it from rotating and pulling the spine out of alignment.
It’s great for people who suffer from lower back pain or leg pain, especially those with sciatica. When you sleep on your side, your upper leg might roll forward to rest on the mattress. This twisting pressure on the lower back can irritate the sciatic nerve.
Side sleeping is also useful for those with breathing abnormalities, like sleep apnoea. In this sleeping position, your airways are more stable and less likely to restrict air. Keeping your spine aligned, reduces neck and back pain, which then lowers the chance of sleep apnea.
It improves blood circulation. The slight elevation of putting a pillow between your legs will help facilitate blood flow through the vena cava, which is a major vein carrying blood to the heart and back.
Wake up on the right side of the bed!
A good night's sleep is essential to reinvigorating your energy and mental awareness. Not only can it help boost your mood and prepare you for your day, but also help you recover from illness or heal from injury. So if you are feeling any pins and needles when you wake up, check your sleep posture. It should be your number one priority every night so you can wake up the next morning on the right side of the bed!