How Your Sleeping Position Can Impact Your Health

How Your Sleeping Position Can Impact Your Health

We all know that getting a good night’s sleep is a vital component of health — but did you know the position you sleep in can also be important? On the surface, this sounds like junk science. After all, if you’re sleeping, that’s the bit that counts, surely? Why does it matter how you sleep, so long as you’re doing it?

Numerous studies have concluded that your sleeping position can indeed influence your health. The downside of this is that many people have a preferred sleeping position, and the idea of trying to sleep differently is very difficult to imagine. It therefore makes sense to know the potential downsides of your preferred sleeping position, so you can take action to mitigate the effects:

Side Sleepers:

The bad news…

  • Side sleepers are the most at-risk group for neck complaints. If you find that you frequently wake up with a sore neck or headache, it’s likely that the body alignment you adopt while sleeping on your side is to blame. Invest in a pillow that is specifically designed to adapt to the curve of your neck, so you are thoroughly supported throughout the night.
  • Side sleepers are also at risk of back and hip problems, again due to the alignment of your body while sleeping. As you can see on this Lull Bed review, side sleepers have been found to enjoy mattresses that conform to their body shape, so keep this in mind when you’re purchasing a mattress.

The good news…

  • Studies have shown that sleeping on your left side can reduce acid reflux for those suffering from GERD.

Back Sleepers:

The bad news…

  • Sleeping on your back does not mean you will necessarily develop a condition called sleep apnea, but sleep apnea sufferers who sleep on their back will definitely exacerbate the condition. Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that causes people to stop breathing during sleep; this is usually only momentary and happens without conscious awareness in most cases. If you do have sleep apnea, avoid sleeping on your back to help prevent attacks.
  • Back sleepers are also more likely to snore than those who sleep in other positions, which can cause issues with dry mouth and throat pain.

The good news

  • Sleeping on your back ensures your spine is always in alignment with the rest of your body, so back sleepers are the least likely to experience aches and pains caused by their sleep habits.

Front Sleepers:

The bad news…

  • Lower back pain is a real risk for front sleepers, as your body is forced to flatten unnaturally. Try sleeping with a pillow under your abdomen to mitigate this.
  • Neck pain is also common for front sleepers. Most specialists recommend using pillows to train yourself to sleep on your side, as front sleeping is generally considered to be the worst sleeping position.

The good news

  • Snoring is less common in front sleepers.

In conclusion:

Now that you know how to prevent any issues caused by your sleeping position, you can make a few changes and ensure that your sleep is always as beneficial and restorative as it should be.

Featured Image By: Pexels


17 responses »

  1. Hmmm….wish one of the sleep positions had more good news points than bad news!
    The bad news is…
    *There doesn’t appear to be a “best” sleep position.
    *All sleep positions have side effects.

    The good news is….
    *No matter what your sleep position is there is always (wait for it for effect)….COFFEE!!!!! 😉


  2. I can relate. Been wearing a CPAP mask since 2011 because of Apnea. Maybe it has also contributed to my heart disease. 🤔 but it is what it is, keep moving along right?


  3. I suffer from sleep paralysis and it’s much more likely to occur when you sleep on your back too! Fab post, I always seem to wake up with painful arms from sleeping on them all night 😂 I don’t move much when I drift off!


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