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Best Sleeping Position

| Dr David Palmer |

Choosing Your Best Sleeping Position

I can’t tell you how many of our patients have woken up with back or neck aches all because they have not chosen the best sleeping position.

This post is going to explain how you can choose the best sleeping position, so that you wake up feeling great. If you find yourself often waking up feeling sore or achy then there is a good chance that you are not sleeping in the best position. It could also be due to a low quality pillow, or mattress, but we will cover those topics in future posts.

The main thing to keep in mind when choosing the best sleeping position is the alignment and shape of your spine. Our spines are designed to be straight from the front and have three gentle curves from the side.

Good Posture Drawing - Durban Chiro


So if you sleep on your side you want to aim to keep your spine straight, and if you sleep on your back you want to keep your curves supported.

This is why we recommend that you shouldn’t sleep on your stomach. Stomach sleepers have to twist their necks to be able to breathe comfortably, which causes the spine to twist and stretch. If you sleep for 8 hours in a twisted, stretched position then this could absolutely leave you waking up with body aches in the morning.

The Best Sleeping Position For Side Sleepers

If you prefer sleeping on your side, the main thing that you want to be aware of is the alignment of your upper back and neck. If your pillow is too thin, your neck will lean to the side, and if your pillow is too thick, it will push your neck to the opposite side. Both of these positions are not great for your neck.

Bad Sleeping Posture - Durban ChiroBad Sleeping Posture - Durban Chiropractor


Ideally you want a pillow that is just the right thickness to keep your neck and upper back straight and neutral.

Best Sleeping Position - Chiro Durban


The other issue to consider when sleeping on your side is what to do with your legs. We tend to roll our upper leg forward to take the pressure off our knees, this then ends up twisting the lower back and increases the strain on the lower back. So the best thing to keep your spine in a neutral position is to place a small rolled up towel, or cushion between your knees.


The Best Position For Back Sleepers

If you prefer sleeping on your back, the main thing that you want to be aware of is maintaining the curve of your neck and not pushing your head into a forward head posture. If you sleep with pillows under your head it tends to push you into a forward head posture, and this is something we really want to avoid. Forward head posture is a major cause of back and neck pain, as well as headaches. We tend to spend most of our day hunched over our computers and phones, so the last thing we want to do is spend our nights in this position too.

Wrong Sleeping Position - Chiro Durban


The better option is to use a rolled up towel or round pillow under your neck, this will support the curve of your neck but not push your head too far forward. It is also beneficial to place a cushion or pillow under your knees, this will help take the pressure off your lower back.

Durban Chiro - Best Position for Neck


If you are waking up with body aches, then please pay more attention to your sleeping position and follow the tips above. If you are looking for a Durban Chiropractor to help you with your aches and pains then give us a call on 0315629180 or email reception@alignchiropractic.co.za