Using a pillow when we sleep is one of the basics that we have learned since little.
Unfortunately, sometimes, it’s not as comfortable as it should be. In fact, depending on your sleep position, you’ll likely find more benefits in sleeping without one.
Here is an article by your hybrid pillow and mattress expert, Polysleep, on four benefits of sleeping without a pillow, some tips and why it’s not for everybody.
Four Benefits of Sleeping Without a Pillow
Whether sleeping with or without a pillow is right for you, it really comes down to your spine and your sleep position. Here are some benefits of not using a pillow:
It can be great for stomach sleepers
Human beings aren't made for sleeping on their stomachs, but many individuals love this sleep position anyway. When you sleep on your belly, your body's position adds stress on your neck and it forces your spine into an unnatural position, preventing it from maintaining its natural curve.
By adding a pillow on top of this, it can accentuate the stress. But there are certain pillows made for stomach sleepers.
The University of Rochester Medical Center conducted a study showing that when you sleep on your belly, it places most of your weight on the middle of your body, causing extra stress to your neck and back.
By keeping your neck and head in a flatter position by sleeping without a pillow, you help promote better spinal alignment and posture and decrease stress.
It can prevent facial acne
You could potentially avoid acne since it’s the result of the accumulation of oil and dirt on your face, which clogs your pores. The inflammation could lead to redness, swelling, and infections.
For most of the night, your face is typically on your pillow. And it's likely you don't wash your pillow or pillow covers every night. Therefore, it's exposed to dust, saliva, and sweat, which makes it a place where bacteria reside, leading to facial acne.
Certain sleep professionals also believe specific sleeping positions benefit you more when you don't use a pillow. The position you sleep in will dictate the type of pillow you should or shouldn't be using.
It may help with neck pain
As an adult, simply sleeping in a certain position can make it feel like you've just taken a beating. Many individuals struggling with neck pain have problems due to the way they sleep.
Whether not using a pillow helps relieve neck pain depends again on your position.
Sleeping on your stomach will likely cause you to turn your head to the side, putting your neck in an awkward position.
So, if this is how you tend to sleep, then the use of a pillow could make the awkwardness of this angle worse. In this situation, you could ease your neck pain by sleeping without a pillow.
However, if you tend to sleep on your back, by sleeping with no pillow, you’ll be putting your neck in a position that's more unnatural than you would if you slept with a pillow. Back sleeping with no pillow could then actually cause neck pain rather than relieve it.
It may be good for side sleepers
Sleeping on your side is actually said to be the healthiest sleep position, but if you’re sleeping with a pillow that doesn't provide the right support, this isn't the case.
Typically, people who sleep on their side require a pillow to keep their spine aligned while they sleep. So in reality, if you sleep on your side, you really shouldn't sleep without a pillow.
In this case, your best bet would be to sleep on a pillow that you can customize like the fully customizable pillow by Polysleep, which contains adjustable inner layers.
Sleeping Without a Pillow Isn't for Everybody
While there are some benefits of sleeping without a pillow, these benefits aren't a one-size-fits-all. It might only help if you tend to sleep in a specific position.
For instance, if you're a stomach sleeper, forgetting the pillow could help promote better spinal alignment, but it won’t totally help with the unnatural position. It would still be hard to keep your spine neutral because you'd be putting a lot of your weight on the center of your body.
If you sleep on your stomach, to help with better posture, you should consider placing a pillow under your pelvis and stomach, which will help lift the center of your body, decreasing spinal pressure, despite whether or not you use a pillow under your head.
In other sleep positions, it’s not a good idea to forego the pillow. It places your spine in an unnatural posture, thereby straining your muscles and joints. If you sleep on your side or back, it's best to use the pillow.
Tips for Sleeping Without a Pillow
If you want to make the attempt of not using a pillow just to see if it works for you, it will take a little time for you to get used to it. This is particularly true if you've been sleeping with a pillow all your life.
Here are some tips that will help you transition, if you feel you might benefit from this.
Get a good mattress:
This is important. If you're struggling to obtain quality sleep, the problem might not even be your pillow, but instead, it may be your mattress.
Ideally, you should replace your mattress every five to 10 years with a quality mattress, like hybrid foam mattresses.
A hybrid foam mattress is a good solution for those wanting to try and sleep without a pillow. For instance, you could try a Zephyr mattress by Polysleep. Its advanced design is made for individuals who are looking for the best possible sleep experience.
Start slow – work your way down:
If you're used to sleeping on a big fluffy pillow and you now want to transition, you should try to sleep on a flatter one first and then gradually go to no pillow at all.
If you really can’t, choose the right pillow:
If you don’t feel the benefits of sleeping without a pillow, you'll want to be sure you choose the right one.
This is where the Polysleep Pillow comes in. Polysleep's fully customizable pillow provides you with a whole different pillow experience, because you can customize it to suit your needs by removing or adding adjustable layers of hybrid foam.
Bottom line, sleeping without a pillow could be ideal for some individuals, but not for others. It's all about personal preference.
If you don’t experience the benefits of sleeping without a pillow, then choosing a comfortable mattress and pillow can help.
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