Neck Pain Exercises-treat your own neck pain by using the best neck exercises and learn which are the worst for your neck.

Sleeping and neck pain

Posted by in Neck Pain quick tips |

As a general rule whether you sleep on your side or your back you want to make sure that your neck is not getting pushed forwards, backwards or sideways. It should be fairly level. If you are sleeping on your back you definitely do not want too many pillows that push your head into a forward position like we have seen in poor sitting postures. This is very common and is a common reason why people wake up with neck pain. I have talked at great length in many of my other articles about the importance of keeping your posture with your head on top of your shoulders, not out in front of them. You need to imagine that your head and shoulders should be like a golf ball sitting on a tee. Then your head sits on top of your spine which reduces the stress and strain on your neck muscles and ligaments enormously. The same goes for sleeping; just because you are now horizontal it does not mean that you can now have your head pushed forward again.
If you sleep on your back you want a pillow that keeps your head in a reasonably level position with your body. You don’t want your head sinking backwards into the pillow nor do you want it pushed forwards.

Lying on your side to sleep
if you lay on your side to sleep you doesn’t want your head sinking too far into the pillow nor getting pushed up. If you are lying on your side you want the feeling that your head is pretty much in a neutral position as opposed to being bent to the left or right. Imagine if you were told to stand or sit with your head to one side for 8 hours, by the end of the day it would feel very sore wouldn’t it. This is what is happening if your head is kept in poor position all night from a bad pillow or wrong pillow.

Is it OK to sleep on your stomach?

When it comes to the question of whether you should sleep on your stomachs I want you to do this little experiment. Do it carefully though. I want you to turn your head to one side as far as you can and now tilt it backward a little. Now imagine if I pushed your head a little further around and a little further backwards and you had to keep that position for an hour or so and then we would do the same on the other side and continue this for eight or so hours. This is the position you have when you are on your stomachs with the pressure of the mattress or pillows pushing your head further. Your head is fully rotated and pushed backwards. If it’s not comfortable to do standing up it’s definitely not going to be comfortable for your neck lying down either. Furthermore, your discs swell up overnight as they fill with fluid which puts even more intra discal pressure on the spine and its surrounding ligaments adding even more stress. Therefore, make sure that you have a good pillow and I have written which pillows are good for your necks in a previous article. As far as sleeping on your stomachs goes, this is most definitely not healthy for your necks!

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