One of the biggest questions that I am asked from my clients is, “Do you think my bed and/or my pillow may be the culprit of my aching neck or back?”
Let me break this all down for you.
Here are the general rules:
Pillow height is dependent on the position that you most commonly sleep and your shoulder to side of your head measurement. This last statement is a bit tricky, all we need to achieve is to make your spine (including your neck) parallel to the bed. Too thin a pillow allows your head to dip, too tall of a pillow cranks your neck up. You also have to think about your sleeping position in this quest. For example, if you sleep with your arm under your pillow you need to account for that when you are trying to find the right size pillow. If you are a back sleeper, a thinner pillow is needed so that you do not flex your head all night long.
We need support under our necks at night that will promote a good spinal curve. I am not a big fan of orthopedic pillows, because the curves that they have molded in them do not match up with most people’s necks. People may have short necks and wide shoulders, or long necks and smaller shoulders. The curve of our neck is not identical for everyone, therefore one pillow style isn’t good for all people.
Here is how we find the right pillow for you.
Whatever department store you like to shop at find one of those fake bed displays. Go and pull out every pillow you think would look comfortable. Lie on the bed and dedicate a side of the bed to make a yes and no pile. Lay on every pillow and if you like one pillow put it on the yes side and if you try another and it does not feel right throw it on the no side. When you have finished, choose your top 3 pillows and write down the names of the other possible winners.
Purchase the top choice pillow and take it home. Slit open the bag, but do not pull the pillow out of it. Double sheet the pillow and sleep on it. Give it a few days to a week and decide if it is right for you. See how your neck and head feel in the morning or how well rested you feel.
If it is not the pillow for you, take your receipt and bring the pillow back to the store and get your #2 pillow that you wrote down.
This is the best way of choosing the perfect pillow without owning a several ($100) pillow collection that no one likes.