How Can Sleeping Positions Affect Health?
Sleep is necessary for our physical and mental well-being. We already know we should be sleeping more, but the quality of our sleep is just as important. The position that you sleep in can affect your health, from your skin to back pain. Here are some ways that sleep positions affect health.
Back & Neck Pain
Have you ever woken up and felt so stiff you can’t turn your head? One of the most common consequences of improper sleep positions is back and neck pain. If you want to improve your back or neck pain, try sleeping on your back. You can also try a firmer mattress or a flatter pillow to keep your spine aligned.
Many people suffer from sleep apnea, which occurs when your breathing is interrupted during sleep. This causes snoring and discomfort and can even become dangerous. Try sleeping on your left side to fix this, but either side will help. Avoid sleeping on your back.
Heartburn & Acid Reflux
Heartburn and acid reflux is the result of stomach acid moving up the esophagus. Sleeping in a more upright position helps with these conditions because gravity keeps the acid down. We know falling asleep in a chair or sitting down can be difficult, but a more elevated pillow may also help. Try to sleep on your back and avoid sleeping on the right side.
Sleeping on your stomach or your side can lead to wrinkles and acne. Gravity pulls the skin down, causing it to sag and wrinkle more easily. Sleeping in this position can also lead to breakouts, especially if your pillow isn’t clean. Your skin will be touching the dirt and oil on your pillow all night! Try sleeping on your back to keep your skin looking fresh and healthy.
If you struggle with digestive issues, such as IBS or stomach pains, sleeping on your left side may help ease symptoms. This position encourages waste elimination and helps food travel down to your large intestines. Some people also report that sleeping on their stomach helps with IBS.