In Search of the Perfect Pillow
Other than the mattress and box spring, pillows are the most important piece of bedding to ensure a comfortable, restful and healthy night's sleep. The perfect pillow can greatly enhance the quality of sleep by maintaining your spine’s alignment and providing the best positioning for your head and neck. Since everyone's bodies and needs are a little bit different, your "perfect" pillow is going to be specific to you.
Here's some things to consider when selecting a pillow.
Your preferred sleep position - are you a side, back, or belly sleeper?
- If you primarily sleep on your stomach or your back, consider a soft pillow.
- Combination side and back sleepers often find a medium firmness to be a good choice.
- If you sleep primarily on your side, a firm pillow is best. The Dr. Mary Side Sleeper is a great choice if you're exclusively a side sleeper; it was designed by noted Sports Chiropractor Dr. Mary Collings.
What other physical features are unique to you?
- Do you have broad shoulders or a long neck? Maybe a queen or king sized pillow is a better fit for you.
- Do you have a uniquely large or small head? Perhaps consider a softer or firmer pillow to better support your head.
Pillow care - take care of them so they can take care of you...
Now that you've found your perfect pillow, your should take care of it, so it will last for years to come. Properly cared for, pillows should last up to 2-3 years!
- Plump daily. To plump or fluff your pillow, grab the corners on the short end and tap it against the bed surface two or three times. Flip the pillow and do the same thing on the other end. Do this each morning when you make your bed. When you climb in, your pillow will be ready for you.
- Wash cases and protectors weekly. Toss your pillow cases and pillow protectors in the wash each week.
- Replace old pillows regularly. Assess your pillow’s comfort regularly to make sure it’s still providing the best spine alignment and head and neck positioning. When your pillow starts to make your neck, shoulders or head hurt, it's probably time to replace it.