How Your Sleep Position Can Affect Your Slumber

 How do you sleep? Are you a side, stomach, fetal position snoozer? Your sleep position can have a serious impact on your health and slumber

 How do you sleep? Chances are high that no matter how restless your sleep may seem, you tend to get the most sleep in one particular position every night.

You may go to bed late or early, sleep in or wake at the crack of dawn, but your body has a natural position it defaults to during your deepest state of slumber. 

With this in mind, have you ever stopped to wonder how your sleeping position is affecting the quality of your sleep and your overall health? Here's what you should know... 

How Do Your Sleep? What You Should Know About Your Sleep Position 

No matter how comfortable your natural sleep position is to you, it could actually be negatively affecting your quality of sleep. Down the line, this could cause major health problems such as sleep apnea, muscle strain, hypertension, weight gain, and more.

The quality of your pillow and mattress could also play a large role in your sleep schedule. Here's how to choose a mattress for great quality sleep...

So when you hit the lights and snuggle down into your favorite sleep position, here's how it affects you: 

1. The Fetal Position

This is undoubtedly one of the most popular sleep positions for most people, especially among women. In fact, research shows that over 40% of people sleep in the fetal position- also known as the ''baby''. 

This is a relatively healthy sleep position as it does not put any strain on your spine or neck throughout the night.

In addition, studies have shown that your brain does a better job at clearing out neurological waste when sleeping on your side, versus your back. This could help in warding off neurological disorders such as Alzheimer's or Parkinson's later in life. 

This position is also ideal for pregnant women as it improves circulation while you sleep and prevents the uterus from pressing down onto the liver. But keep in mind that you should always sleep on your left side, and not your right to reap these benefits! 

However, the downside of this position is that it can restrict breathing as it limits your lung capacity and diaphragm movement. So it's not a great position for those with sleep apnea or other breathing issues.  

2. The Skydiver 

The skydiver sleeps on their stomach, with their head to one side and their arms wrapped around a pillow. Not many people sleep on their stomachs, but for those who do, this could seriously affect the quality of your sleep. 

To add to this, the skydiver sleep position takes up space so it could cause issues if you share a bed with a partner! Quite frankly, this is one of the worst sleep positions as it causes major muscle strain on the neck and back as you sleep. Basically, it crunches sensitive muscles that protect these areas, while flattening the natural curve of your spine. 

This also causes blocked airways as you sleep, causing you to sleep restlessly as you toss and turn to get comfortable.

3. The Log 

This is yet another side-sleeping position, but instead of keeping your arms close to your body, they are outstretched at your sides. This is a fairly popular sleeping position, and yes, it's actually good for your health! 

Sleeping on your side in this kind of neutral position is great for both your neck and spine and they are aligned throughout the night. As a result, this helps in combatting instance of sleep apnea. 

However, if you suffer from lower back pain, sleeping in this position could compound your pain. To take some pressure off your hips, simply slip a soft pillow or blanket between your knees while you sleep 

4. The Freefall

The freefall is another stomach-sleeping position that is not great for your overall sleep quality and alignment of your neck and spine. Those who sleep in the freefall position lie on their stomachs, with their arms tucked under a pillow or around either side of the head. 

Basically, this leaves little to no support for your neck, which could result in major neck pain and tension related headaches. Ultimately this neck pain could also transfer into back pain which could cause restless sleep. 

Make this position a little more gentle on your spine by using a softer pillow propped slightly under your forehead, rather than sleeping with your head to one side.

This position is also known to restrict breathing as you lay on your airways throughout the night. So it's not ideal for those who suffer from sinus issues, snoring or sleep apnea.  

5. The Soldier

This is yet another very popular sleep position, especially amongst men. This position is as straightforward as it sounds- flat on your back, with your arms at your sides. 

The soldier is not ideal for those who tend to snore, suffer from sleep apnea or lower back pain. Snoring is not only disruptive to those who sleep next to you but can lead to major health issues such as the thickening of the carotid artery. This could begin to restrict blood flow to the brain, face, and neck over time. 

However, if you suffer from acid reflux or heartburn, this position is great. Just make sure your head/chest is slightly elevated as you sleep. 

If you want to make this position a little more comfortable for lower back pain, simply place a soft pillow or rolled up blanket under your knees. This takes the pressure off your spine and supports its natural curve. 

6. The Starfish

The starfish is similar to the soldier sleep position, only your legs are spread apart a bit and your arms are raised above your head. 

This is also a good position for those suffering from acid reflux and heartburn but tends to aggravate conditions such as sleep apnea and snoring. It can also lead to upper back and shoulder pain as your arms are raised in an unnatural position above your head and your muscles will take the strain. 

If you suffer from lower back pain and tend to sleep in this position, make sure your mattress is firm, and not soft and worn out. 

Understand How to Manage Your Health With Us 

So, with all of the above in mind, how do you sleep and what can you do to change poor sleeping habits? If you're still stuck for a solution, take control of your health by exploring our website for more. 

We supply a number of helpful blogs on a range of topics including health, wellness, travel, simple life hacks - the list goes on!
 
 
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