One of the first steps to a great night’s sleep is to choose a pillow that will provide you with maximum comfort.
Here are some easy guidelines on how to pick the perfect pillow for your sleeping position and individual taste.
Pillows for Sleeping on Your Back
If you prefer sleeping on your back, then soft down bow pillows or feathers types work best. If you feel like the pillow has too much loft under your neck, just scrunch up a small corner of it and place it underneath the lower cervical area so that there is proper support in this area. You can use different pillow thicknesses or combine them to achieve an even better effect – thick pillows prevent your head from tilting forward and thin pillows serve as a deterrent against sinking too deeply into the bed.
Pillows for Sleeping on Your Side
If you sleep predominantly on your side, then a pillow with medium to low loft would be perfect for you. This type of pillows also prevents your head from tilting forward which is helpful if you tend to wake up often as this causes minor neck discomfort and minor back pain. If you have a habit of sleeping on your stomach, then a very thin pillow will suffice – it should keep your spine straight and not cause any unnecessary strain.
Separate Pillow for Head and Neck Support
If you feel like there isn’t enough support for both of your head and neck while lying down, then choosing an orthopedic pillow or cervical pillow can help greatly. These pillows are long enough to provide support for your head and neck, while preventing an unnatural curvature of the cervical spine.
How lofty the pillow is also plays a significant role in determining its level of comfort. If you are used to sleeping in a sinking bed or on a very soft mattress, then you should choose a pillow that has medium loft so that it provides adequate support without aggravating pressure points in your body. However, if you prefer sleeping in hard beds or even sitting upright when reading, then choosing a firm pillow would be much more suitable. The taller the person is the higher loft their pillow should possess.
Types of Pillow Filling Materials
The next thing you’ll need to consider is the type of pillow filling. Here are some of the most popular options to consider:
Feathers and Down
This material offers a plush feel but can be very bulky which makes it harder to use in combination with other types of pillows. Long feathers do not give as much support but works great if you like sleeping on a fluffy surface, while short down provides good comfort and firmness. However, both materials offer sufficient neck and head support for everyone and come at an affordable price (even if they’re made from real swan or goose feathers). On top of everything, down feather pillows are hypoallergenic and dust mite resistant.
Synthetic Pillow Filling
Contrary to popular belief, synthetic pillows are quite popular due to their easy care, durability and reasonable price. The best known types of filling used for synthetic pillows are polyester, micro beads or kapok.
Latex pillows provide great support but can be expensive.
Memory Foam Pillow
Memory foam provides maximum comfort because it adapts its shape to the sleeper’s neck and head contours. These pillows have a high level of firmness that keeps your body in an optimal position throughout the night. However, these pillows also posses lower loft which means they might not be as comfortable to sleep on if you are used to sleeping on soft surfaces. This type is also very sensitive to high temperatures, so if you tend to sleep hot, then it’s probably not the best option.
This type of filling is made out of buckwheat hulls that are burned to remove impurities before being put into pillows. The process also allows for adaptable loft which means that these pillows are more breathable compared to other types because they don’t retain heat as easily. Many find it hard to get used at first, but this pillow gradually molds itself to the shape of your head and neck whereas others provide immediate comfort. The only disadvantage is that you can break or damage these pillows if you handle them roughly, but besides the initial investment, the price is quite affordable. Keep in mind that the best time to replace your pillow is when it loses its shape completely.
If you are looking for a good pillow that provides enough support for your spine without being too expensive, then choosing one with medium loft would be the most cost effective option. You can find high quality pillows in department stores, pharmacies or online shops – but remember to do some research beforehand! To make sure that you are purchasing an original product, look out for sellers that provide detailed information about their shop and guarantee their products’ authenticity.
Pillows become worn out and lose their firmness over time, so it’s best to replace them at least every two years.