Sleep is not only one of the most important aspects of your daily routine, but it is in fact much more than that – it’s an evolutionary adaptation to allow the brain and body to process the information gathered throughout the day.
Sleep is linked to the restoration of neurological damage, and in the early years of child development, it is a basic component of learning and adapting to new cognitive functions.
How do you choose the best pillow for your needs
Neurological and muscle fatigue can be found in people who do not use the proper neck and head support during sleep.
It can lead to chronic neck pain, kinks in the spine, restlessness during sleep, interruption of REM and other important sleep segments, leaving you a lesser version of yourself, however, all of that can be remedied with these 10 things you should consider when picking the best pillow.
1. Suitable for the neck
The position of the neck, based on the position of the body, is entirely dictated by the width of the shoulders and the build of the body.
It’s no coincidence that your body chooses to sleep the way it does – regardless if you are a side sleeper, lay on your stomach or back, proper neck support, according to your body specifications, is vital for your rest.
The support your neck and head receive during the night will dictate many of the diligent and secret processes your body goes through, improper support will lead to the erroneous and dangerous processes which include the fatigue and cramping of muscles, insomnia or even asthma.
This is why this criteria is so high up on our list of the most important aspects of a good pillow.
2. Helps prevent snoring
There are many reasons for snoring, however, one of the most prominent one is the improper choice of a pillow. Most of the time we choose a pillow by how soft or hard it is, but rarely make notice of our sleeping position.
It’s the way our body lays that can lead to snoring due to the blockage of airway paths and the drying of saliva due to breathing through the mouth.
Studies have shown that sleeping with your mouth open, or in fact breathing through it while awake, can lead to oxygen deprivation which can lead to mild brain damage or the reduction of brain function.
It is exactly during sleep that our brain is most active, processing the information which our brain has gathered throughout the day, which is why proper oxygen supply is so important.
Getting a pillow which reduces snoring will reduce the usage of the mouth as means of receiving oxygen and will generally improve the sleeping conditions, especially for married couples.
3. It should be comfortable
While the other aspects described below and above are as important, having a good’s night rest depends quite a lot on that you find your pillow to be comfortable.
Tossing and turning during the night due to uncomfortable sleeping arrangements might bring about reduced rest and well as disruptions of sleeping patterns and important REM processes which occur during the night.
What makes a pillow comfortable is entirely up to your preferences – you might like them soft, you might like them hard or high, regardless of what your preferences are it should be comfortable to you.
The best way to know if it’s a good choice or not is after a night’s sleep, it’s at that point that you will understand what you are looking for.
4. Supports your whole spine
The spine is the main column of your whole body, its entire structure and skeleton are based around it, so having a pillow which helps you sleep in a proper position will dramatically change the way you feel in the morning.
The sleeping position which you are used to may be dictated entire upon your choice of pillow, simply because of the way it makes your spine feel during the night.
As the center of your body, the spine has the important task to alight your entire figure during the day, but during the night it decompresses and the spaces between the different vertebra actually expand.
The compression during the day occurs due to the gravitation pull of the Earth, shortening you by as much as 1 inch.
While you lay, your spine rests and slowly returns to a more natural state so when you wake up you are actually slightly taller than when you were when you went to bed the night before.
And a pillow is entirely responsible for the proper decompression of the spine as it is the thing that alights and provides you support during the night.
5. Suitable for your favorite sleep position (back, side, etc.)
As was mentioned above, your sleeping position may be entirely dictated based on the type of pillow you choose – sometimes it might be a guessing game, other times you might find a pillow that works for you straight away. The important thing is to get something that is customizable and is suitable for your sleeping patterns.
The mass manufactured pillows are generally produced for side sleepers, however, there are some choices out there which will be suitable for those choosing to sleep on their stomach.
Sleeping on the side, with a slight twist to your pelvis can lead to some serious spine and back issues so you need to keep that in mind when getting and orthopedic pillow for sleeping on your side.
6. Made with high quality materials
The quality of the material of your pillow is just as important as it’s comfort – there are some breathable materials which reduce the accumulation of sweat – generally speaking those are breathable materials which can cost a bit more, but provide you with a lot more comfort.
This is especially important during the summer when the heat is up and you are sweating all throughout the night.
The quality of the material will also dictate its longevity and the quality of sleep you will be getting, in fact, the difference between a cheap pillow and an expensive one is the difference between a dog and a whale – huge.
Once you enjoy a pillow that has been manufactured to a high standard you will be reluctant to go back to a low-quality one, simply due to the feel of the material which it was made out of.
7. Has hypoallergenic properties
A lot of the problems that people experience in the evening, especially when in deep sleep, is that of getting rashes or blemishes on their skin or scalp. While hard to spot, these problems may lead to hair loss due to skin irritation and can even invite dandruff to the mixture due to improper ventilation during sleep.
There are pillows with silver strands woven into their fibers to create a neutral, sterile environment which deters skin mites from going on your skull.
Having a pillow like that gives you the comfort you are looking for, without changing much about the way you sleep – you don’t even have to use specialized chemicals to clean your pillow because it cleans itself.
There are people who have quite irritable skin and even if the pillow is clean and is brand new, they still might get blemishes or other skin problems from it.
Luckily, there is a solution – a pillow with a specialized, hypoallergenic material and contents with soothing effect for the skin which also have a cooling effect on existing problems, while they are not a solution, they at least to not exacerbate the issues at hand.
8. Improves sleeping
The entire goal of this article is to provide you with the best solutions to finding the proper pillow for your needs.
The most important criteria is that improves your sleep – this category can be taken as a summary of every important aspect – proper neck and spine support, proper ventilation, prevents snoring and sleeping with your mouth open and it gives you enough support to your head.
There are many cases of sleep apnea caused by the wrong pillow, so when getting a new one, if you have such problems sleeping, they might be due to a bad pillow choice.
9. Is adjustable
An adjustable pillow is a fantastic new way of choosing exactly what you need – they have many interchangeable layers with different densities which can be swapped out or removed to create the best pillow choice for you.
These pillow types are the best chance for picky sleepers to find the best solution to their issues.
The adjustable pillow combines every form, every type and every height of pillow all into one and all you have to do to create the pillow for you is to remove or add different layers.
Some are soft and some are hard which allows you to change the soft ones if you want a pillow that has a more gentle, soft feeling to it.
What is most important is that these pillows help you find the best, healthiest position for sleeping, simply because you can customize it.
While they can be a fair bit more expensive than the normal pillows, your ability to choose exactly how you sleep is priceless – health is the most important factor in our lives and if getting a pillow can stop you from suffocating in your sleep, then that’s an easy choice to make.
There are many adjustable pillow choices on the market, but the ones you should be looking for are those who have interlocking layers which will not slip during your sleep.
The material of the pillow should be orthopedic and have hypoallergenic properties to prevent the accumulation of dead skin cells and dust mites on its surface.
10. Coincides with the interior
When thinking about living conditions, many interior designers pick pillows as a way to spruce up an environment, whether it’s a sofa or a bed, a lounge chair or a dining room.
The pillow is a universal interior design choice which gives you the choice of decorating the house whichever way you’d like.
Matching the pillow to your interior is as important as matching the drapes to the carpet and as a fundamental rule to decorating a living space, using pillows provides not only visual stimulation, but also comfort.
They can make a deep couch, an arguably uncomfortable choice, into a pillow-shaped cloud in your house which will make it a center point whenever you have company over.
As such, the pillow has many universal uses, it can have its decorative uses, but it also has the important function of properly supporting you during sleep – this is where you lay your most precious cargo each evening – so pick carefully.
We hope that this article has been of use to you – just remember when you go on about shopping, do what is best for your health, listen to your body and trust it’s wisdom, it knows best, especially when it comes to its own geometry.
I love traveling and writing. I’ve lived in different places across the world – Thailand, Japan, Indonesia and Bulgaria – and also traveled to many countries in Europe, Asia and South America.
At last I decided that the US was the best place for me and returned to my hometown.
Now I’m enjoying my time in Columbus, Ohio and I’ve turned to a new page in my life – blogging.