Getting enough sleep at night is very important as a lack of sleep can have severe effects on your mental and physical health. However, your sleeping positions can also have an effect on your health. Here are some of the best and worst sleeping positions and the affects they have on the body:
On Your Back
Sleeping on your back with your arms by your side is considered to be the best sleeping position as it keeps your spine in a neutral position. It helps with back pain as it takes pressure off the spine, joints and neck (as long as pillows are not too high). It also helps reduce acid reflux, as it makes it harder for fluid to rise to your oesophagus.
Additionally, it helps to minimize wrinkles as it doesn’t put pressure on your delicate facial tissue. However, sleeping on your back is associated with snoring and generally sleep apnea suffers sleep on their back.
On Your Side
Sleeping on your side is good for supporting the spine and its natural curve. It helps with back and neck pain while also reducing snoring and sleep apnea, as it doesn’t have as great an effect on the gravity of your throat tissue. However, it can cause shoulder pain due to restricted blood flow and pressure on the nerves.
It may also increase wrinkles on the face and chest due to gravity. Additionally, the side you sleep on has an effect. Sleeping on the right can intensify heartburn, and sleeping on the left can put strain on important internal organs, such as the liver. Yet, this position reduces heartburn and acid reflux, making it easier for people who suffer from these conditions to sleep.
The Fetal Position
Sleeping in the fetal position is one of the worst sleeping positions for the back and neck. The curled up position of the spine can restrict breathing as well as causing strain on the back and neck, especially for arthritis suffers. Similar to sleeping on your side, it also contributes to wrinkles on the face and chest.
On the other hand, sleeping in the fetal position aids snorers and sleep apnea sufferers, as it helps them to have a more comfortable, undisturbed sleep.
On Your Stomach
Sleeping on your stomach is the worst sleeping position, especially for those who suffer with back pain. It can also be the cause of back pain as the curve of the back becomes flattened, which can lead to lower back pain. Also, sleeping with the head turned to one side causes a strain on the neck.
The only positive to sleeping on your stomach is that it eases snoring and mild sleep apnea. This sleeping position can be improved by placing a pillow under the hips. This helps improve the natural curve of the back reducing the strain on the lower back.
Key Take Away
The majority of people tend to sleep in one of the worst sleeping positions, mainly because they find it is the most comfortable sleeping position for them. Sleeping on the back is seen to be the best sleeping position, but if you find yourself unable to fall asleep like this, a few adjustments to your normal sleeping position can make all the difference.
Using pillows to support the lower back and legs can help relieve pain. Alternatively, invest in an electric adjustable bed which can move and shape itself into a comfortable position at the touch of a button!
We at the Natural Sleep Company hope you’ve found a way to improve your sleep through your position. For more professional sleep advice, stay tuned to our blog!