Do you ever get a crick in your neck that won’t go away? Do you ever wake up with neck pain that puts a damper on your day before it even starts?
As you grow older, shoulder pain, back pain and neck pain become familiar sensations. The choices you make and the stress you take on can have negative effects on your body, causing physical discomfort. There could be a whole number of factors that contribute to neck stiffness in the morning…or it could just be your pillow.
Why do some pillows cause neck pain?
Finding the best pillow is tough. Some like to sleep on soft pillows, some like to sleep on firm pillows. At the end of the day - or night - it comes down to your preferred sleeping position and how your pillow affects muscle alignment.
Ergonomics are important when picking the right pillow for you. Choose a pillow that's elevated enough to keep your spine straight instead of your neck forming an awkward angle when you're asleep. Neck support is crucial if you want to achieve a sleep position that prevents neck pain. This preference varies from person to person, and elevation depends on whether you are a side sleeper, back sleeper, or stomach sleeper.
Stomach sleepers should opt for thinner pillows. If they are too elevated, pillows tend to put unnecessary stress on the neck muscles of stomach sleepers, resulting in neck pain the next day.
Make sure to check pillow firmness. Even with proper elevation, if a pillow is too soft or doesn’t have enough give, your neck still may end up in awkward positions when you sleep, potentially leading to a sore neck.
When it comes to pillows, memory foam is one of the best materials for getting the right shape and feel for your head and neck. Cervical pillows are also recommended to keep the natural shape of your neck and head, no matter whether you prefer side sleeping or back sleeping.
The right pillow for your body type
What type of pillow should you get for your body type? Getting a pillow with the right elevation and firmness may actually depend on your body type as well as your sleeping position.
Body size may affect your neutral spinal alignment and how this relates to your pillow. For example, if you’re a side sleeper, broader shoulders may mean that you need a more elevated pillow so your neck doesn’t slope at a downward angle when you sleep.
Is it time to get a new pillow?
When should you get a new pillow?
We use our pillows on a daily basis. Even though we don’t realise it, this leads to a considerable about of dirt, body oil, sweat, and dead skin cell build up over time.
Another factor to consider is the firmness and flatness of your pillow. Over time, pillows tend to lose their height and firmness. If you’re not looking for a soft or flat pillow, it might be time to switch it out for a new one to prevent waking up with a stiff neck.
One other reason to replace a pillow is a change in sleeping position. Are you a stomach sleeper turned side sleeper? It could be time to find a new pillow.
Even with proper care, a good rule of thumb is to replace your pillows every couple of years. High-quality pillows may last longer, but keep in mind your changing body type, sleeping preferences and overall wear and tear to your pillow.
Our advice? A new comfortable pillow may just be the pain relief you're looking for. Say goodbye to neck pain by finding the best pillow for you and say hello to deeper sleep and pain-free mornings. Ready to get a good night's sleep? Shop the Ecosa pillow now.
The Ecosa recommendation: Have a look at our Ecosa's machine washable contour memory foam pillow. It’s ergonomically designed to support your neck and head alignment, with the option to adjust pillow height to suit your preferences. Its breathable structure and cover will keep you comfortable each night, and with activated charcoal, it helps with odour control and antibacterial protection.