There are some things in our lives to which we do not give enough attention. But deep down, we know how valuable they are to us. Well, when was the last time you gave thought about the pillow you rested your head on? If you have not thought about it, then it is high time you think about your sleeping pillows because they aren’t just some mushy toys to play around with; they also determine and affect the quality of your sleep. So let’s just dive into the factors that you should keep in mind while determining the right pillow online for a good night’s sleep.
Your Pillow Matters
The primary job of your pillow is to give adequate support to your neck, head, and shoulders so that your body stays in a perfectly comfortable position throughout the night. The neutral spine alignment is something that you should always keep in mind. It essentially means that your neck, head, and spine should be neutrally aligned in the same position while also supporting the natural curvature of the spine. It also reduces neck pain and releases pressure from the body.
Different Types, Different Needs
But here is the catch. There is not one type or kind of pillow that suits everyone. Different body types and sleepers need a distinct pillow that gives them the comfort that they need.
- Back-sleepers: Talking about the back sleepers first, who rest their head on the pillow, they need one with medium firmness, medium amount of softness and the perfect amount of loft in their pillow. If it is too high, it will cause pain in the neck, and if it is too flat, it will not give your neck enough cushion. The perfect loft will give the required comfort and cushion between the neck and the best mattress. A specific level of stiffness helps the pillow by not losing its form and shape according to the weight of your head. It will provide support to the head and align your neck and spine, along with ensuring that it does not flatten out.
- Side sleepers: Side sleepers should usually have a pillow with a higher loft. It will make sure that the neutral alignment with the spine is maintained and will also assuage the pressure and weight of the body. The firmness should be higher than the one needed for back sleepers, as without it the head will conform to the pillow shape and fall, thus ruining the alignment with your spine. For all these desirable qualities, the pillow needs to be fluffy enough and filled with adequate material so that it can provide a higher loft and be easy and comfy for side sleepers.
- Stomach Sleepers: For stomach sleepers, it is a little bit more difficult to find their perfect comfort, as the position is not usually advised because it puts more pressure on the neck and the lower back, thus straining them. Medical professionals have suggested proper pillow support to mitigate the pain in the spine for stomach sleepers. A low loft is considered highly ideal for such sleeping positions. With a high loft, the head will be positioned upwards, and thus the alignment will go haywire. Additionally, soft support would ensure that the head is aligned perfectly and would furthermore provide a cushy feeling. The fill should also be quite compressible, and the more it is shapeable, the greater the level of comfort for stomach sleepers as they embrace their hands around the pillow rather than keeping them on their sides.
Factors That Matter
When talking about the qualities of a pillow in general, you should keep in mind several factors, right from the fabric to its fill, its size to its weight, and even the environmental effects of it.
- Fill: The fill can be natural down (feathers) or synthetic down, which is relatively cheaper than the feather fill. Cotton and wool pillows usually prevent mites and dust from settling and are, in general, longer lasting than others. Latex pillows are more firm, which provides extra support while also keeping the shape. Memory foam pillows can adjust themselves according to body type and shape, thus making them the most preferred ones for people with multiple back pain ailments.
- Quality and Weight: The quality and weight are vitally important to your comfort. Cotton and natural fill pillows are usually lightweight, whereas synthetic ones are heavier in weight.
- Size: The size of the pillow is subjective to the comfort of the person. If you want to roll over, then a larger pillow might support your head, neck, and shoulder.
- Temperature: There are also various cooling gel infused pillows to reduce the temperature on the surface of the pillow. They circulate your body heat and provide a cool, peaceful sleep.
- Protection: An open and breathable pillowcase is essentially preferred, as it saves the pillow from external dust and makes the pillow last longer.
Along with all these factors, it is also very important to keep the quality and nature of a good mattress in mind, as both are closely related to each other. It is always ideal to pair a firm mattress with a softer pillow, as the latter needs to adapt to the pressure of your head when put on a firm surface. Similarly, a firmer pillow is more suitable for a soft mattress to keep the neutral alignment in place.
When Should One Change the Pillow?
According to medical experts, you should change it every 18 months or else you might run the risk of catching infection, and it is generally unhygienic as well. In more than a year’s time, your pillow will be ridden with dead skin cells, mites, and other pests. An ideal way to check whether it is already time to change your pillow or not, is by folding it in half; if it does not regain its shape and return to its original position, then it’s time to consider adopting a newer, more cozy and cushy resting place!
Hence, this was your go-to pillow guide for choosing your best cuddle buddy for the night! There are innumerable varieties and kinds of pillows, but the one that suits you will be your gateway to sound sleep every night!
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