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Should You Be Sleeping With Or Without A Pillow?

  • 3 min read

Is it Healthy to Sleep Without a Pillow?

You may find yourself getting a full night’s rest but still waking up with a stiff neck and sore back and muscles. You might find yourself thinking that your mattress is to blame, however, your pillow can also be the culprit of a bad night’s sleep and sore, stiff joints and muscles. Having a good quality pillow is a vital partner to having a good quality mattress that is tailored to your sleep style. The quality of your pillow can have a direct impact on the quality of your sleep and so ensuring your pillow compliments your sleeping style is incredibly important. There are also some individuals that choose to forego sleeping with a pillow at night. This is not necessarily a bad thing and can aid in improving your quality of sleep to a certain extent if it matches your sleeping style and needs.


Neutral Sleeping Position

The neutral sleeping position is defined by keeping your neck and spine in line while you sleep. While this may seem uncomfortable, both sleep experts and chiropractors can agree that sleeping in a neutral position has the best benefits for your body. While you may fall asleep in this position, most people move throughout the night and so ensuring you stay in this position is difficult. Due to most of us moving several times throughout the night it may be beneficial to have support from a pillow of some sort to keep your neck and spine aligned when you do move.


Sleeping On Your Side

It has been said by doctors that sleeping on your side, specifically your left-hand side is one of the healthiest positions you can sleep in as it aids in digestion and reduces the effects of acid reflux. Sleeping on your side can also help to improve your rate of airflow which can assist with reducing snoring. If you sleep on your side without a pillow a gap will form between your neck and shoulders, which will in turn cause the spine to curve. Over time this can cause pain in your neck and back and so sleeping without a pillow if you sleep on your side should be avoided and a thicker more supportive pillow should be selected.


Back Sleepers

If you are a back sleeper, doctors have recommended that you always sleep with a pillow. If you sleep on your back you should generally opt for a thinner pillow that contours to your neck and back shape to ensure it properly fills the gap beneath the back of your neck and the bed whilst still supporting the weight of your head. Back sleepers should never sleep without a pillow.


Stomach Sleepers

The majority of people find themselves sleeping on their stomachs as it is known to be one of the more comfortable and natural sleeping positions. Whilst it may be comfortable to sleep on your stomach, some doctors and chiropractors have said that it is in fact one of the unhealthier positions to sleep in as it forces your neck to face either completely left or completely right. Sleeping with your head forced in one direction the whole night can cause strain on your neck and potentially for your spine to become misaligned whether you use a pillow or not. However, sleeping on your stomach might be one of the only positions where you can get away with sleeping without a pillow.