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Sleeping Smart: Tips and Tricks for Maximizing Comfort with Your Pillow

Do you struggle when sleeping with your pillow? A comfortable pillow is the ideal catalyst for a cozy, warm, and restful sleep. It improves overall sleep quality by keeping your upper body in natural alignment.

The right pillow delivers enhancements that benefit your body joints. Your back, neck, shoulder, and hips are free from the shackles of recurring pain.

Comfort optimization starts with making the right purchase, but that’s not all. It’s equally important to action productive sleeping practices and tips.

Getting the best out of your pillows requires a multi-approach technique. Now let’s consider every facet, leaving no stone unturned.

The relationship between sleep style and pillow comfort

Everyone has a favorite sleeping position, and this determines their pillow usage. You must understand the peculiarities of your sleeping position. Let’s check out these sleeping styles and what they entail. 

Side sleeping

Around 54% of people prefer to sleep on their side over other positions. Side sleeping is also considered the healthiest position due to its natural spine alignment. 

Here are some important tips to note when using pillows as a side sleeper. 

  • Side sleepers are best suited to a moderately thick lofted pillow. It should be moderately thick. Place it between your neck and mattress. The firmness should also be average.
  • Maintain a neutral position as a side sleeper by looking straight ahead. Avoid unnecessary head bends and turns.
  • Put another pillow between your knees for optimal comfort. It enhances spine alignment by reducing pressure on your hips, knees, and back. Consider using a body pillow for this as they guarantee the best result.
  • Put extra pillows on either side if you’re a side sleeper due to health challenges. Sleep apnea and acid reflux are some of such conditions. Firm pillows are most recommendable for this.

Back sleeping

Back sleepers aren’t as common as their side counterparts, with only 38% of people preferring this position. We’ve listed a few tips if you intend to stick to this sleep style.

  • Sleep on a pillow that is thinner than usual. This helps maintain your neck’s natural position. Consider using a lower-loft pillow for this.
  • Support your waist with a small pillow to prevent it from extreme bending. It eliminates possible strain on the lower back and puts your spine in alignment.
  • To maintain a neutral sleeping position as a back sleeper, look straight up. Avoid twisting and bending sideways.
  • Ensure your shoulder tops reach your pillow to give them support. In doing this, avoid excess elevation on the pillow. Extreme elevation creates a gap between your shoulders and the bed, leading to back pain. To make things easier, put a cervical pillow at your neck’s curve. 
  • Consider putting a pillow under your knees. This helps to maintain natural alignment and relieve lower back stress.

Stomach sleeping

Sleeping on your stomach is the least recommended position as it poses some health risks. Just 7% of the total population prefer this position, but it’s best to train yourself out of it if you can. For those who cannot abandon this position, consider the tips listed below. 

  • Opt for a thin pillow or none at all. This puts your neck and head in a natural position and prevents pain.
  • Putting an extra thin pillow under your hips will help maximize comfort. It provides support for your spine’s natural curve. 

Choosing the right pillow for maximum comfort

Sleeping with pillow

Selecting the right product is the first step towards comfort. Many don’t know the aspects to consider when choosing a pillow. To make the right choice, check out the important factors below. 

Sleeping position

Each sleeping position has unique pillow requirements. It’s best to select a pillow that complements your sleep style. Your pillow should keep your neck, head, and shoulders level.

Fill and loft

The fill of a pillow has a direct impact on its loft. This is why these two considerations go hand in hand. A pillow with the right loft and fill provides support for your neck. This helps to avoid neck-curving, which can strain your neck and shoulder muscles.

There are three loft options: high, low, and medium. Your ideal loft option depends on your sleep style and body frame. For instance, side sleepers with wider shoulders will find comfort in high-loft pillows while people with higher body weights are best suited for lower-loft options. 

Pillow material 

Sleeping with a pillow with the right material is paramount. There are different options available here. Let’s check them out. 

Memory Foam

Memory foam pillows are perfect for all sleep styles. They contour to the body and boast pressure-relieving properties. Your neck and head condition the foam into the most favorable position.

Some memory foam pillows come in an ergonomic shape with indented and elevated parts. This provides better support for your neck and the cradle of your head. There are also shredded, adjustable foams. You can customize their loft and height by removing and adding the shreds. 

Latex

Latex is a variant of foam fill. Unlike memory foam, latex is sourced from rubber trees. As a result, it offers more sustainability and eco-friendliness than memory foam.

A latex pillow doesn’t contour to the body as smoothly as memory foam. On the flip side, it has a softer and more buoyant feel. Latex can come as an entire piece or shredded components.

Down

Down is a traditional type of pillow fill. It’s made of fluffy clusters from the undercoats of ducks and geese.

Down pillows have a light, cushiony, airy feel and can be quite expensive. They’re suitable for all sleep positions. Extra caution is required with down as sourcing it comes with ethical considerations. 

Down alternative

Down alternative helps you avoid the ethical requirements and costliness of down. It has a soft, airy feel. Down alternative pillows are made from natural synthetic fibers. These fibers imitate the cushiony feeling of down. They’re an excellent choice for sleepers. 

Firmness 

Firmness is an important factor that determines the comfortability of a pillow. High density typically means more fill in a pillow.

Firm pillows provide better support, which is why they’re best for side sleepers. Lower-density pillows are more fitting for back and stomach sleepers.

Washability 

Maintaining your pillow involves regular cleaning and washing. Your pillow accumulates dirt over time. Pathogens hide under dirt, so cleaning is inevitable. That’s why you go for the easily washable options.

Consider cooling technology

Heat can make it hard to enjoy sleep. With cooling pillows, you have an easy fix for this challenge. You sleep quicker and more deeply. There are some cooling technology features to watch out for in a pillow. Among these are copper fibers and gel inserts.

The right pillow that meets all conditions 

Looking for the perfect product that ticks all these boxes? Sleepgram’s 3-in-1 adjustable pillow is the answer you need. You’re guaranteed maximum comfort with it, irrespective of your frame and sleep style. The classic pillow is highly recommended because:

  • It’s customizable: You can customize the pillow based on your preferred setting. Whether it’s loft or firmness, you just need to unzip and adjust it.
  • It’s well-constructed: The 3-in-1 adjustable pillow is made with 100% cotton cover. It boasts a polyester fabric lining and a premium polyester microfiber fill.
  • Reduces the need for fluffing: Sleepgram’s pillow is made with more than a billion silky fibers. This makes it maintain its shape for long, reducing the need for fluffing.
  • Promotes airflow: The pillow uses fibers that are 1/10th of the human hair. This makes it cooling and breathable.
  • Ethically designed: Sleepgram’s pillow is cruelty-free, being made with no animal by-products. All materials used are totally organic. 

Pillow arrangement techniques for better sleep

Sleeping with pillow

Do you know that arrangement can also influence pillow comfort? Proper organization of your pillows has many benefits, such as:

  • Maintaining natural alignment
  • Prevention of muscle strain 
  • Improved blood circulation 
  • Improvement of bed aesthetics 

There are a few techniques and cues to consider here, such as: 

  • Create back support: One of the primary aims of pillow arrangement is back support. Find a pillow whose firmness supports your weight, irrespective of your sleep style.
  • Positioning: Sleep style and pillow material aren’t the only determinants of comfortability. The way you position your pillow also matters. Adjust as much as you can till you finally find a comfortable position.
  • Consider using extra pillows: Extra pillows are good for cushioning. You can put more pillows beside or on your support pillow. This provides extra comfort for your back.
  • Provide support for your arm: In arranging your pillows, arm support is important. This is especially so if you love using your phone or tablet in bed. Putting a pillow on your two sides supports your elbows. It also reduces shoulder strain. 
  • Elevate your feet: Using a pillow or cushion to elevate your feet relieves your lower back. It decreases pain and encourages blood circulation in the legs. 
  • Combine sizes and shapes: Mix and match varying pillow sizes to create your comfort level. It’s also advisable to not restrict yourself to a specific shape or angle. Don’t be afraid of trying our different arrangements.

The role of pillowcases in sleep comfort

Pillowcases play a protective role, both for you and your pillow. Pathogens and dirt pile up on your pillow without them. This makes your pillow hard to wash while putting your health at risk.

Why pillowcase material is important

Choosing the right pillowcase starts with understanding the different materials. The popularly used materials and their advantages are highlighted below.

Cotton

Cotton is the most popular material used for pillowcases. It comes in different thread counts. Cotton pillowcases are loved for being breathable, durable, and easily washable. They’re cool and absorbent, giving you a comfortable feel.

Silk

Silk delivers a more luxurious feel and decreases friction. It’s gentle and smooth on your skin. Silk pillowcases are perfect recommendations for those with sensitive skin. They also regulate temperature, which enhances comfort.

Bamboo

Bamboo is hypoallergenic. Pillowcases made with this material are soft, eco-friendly, and moisture-absorbing. This is why they’re great for those with allergies.

Nylon

Nylon is also a popular pillowcase material. It’s designed to mimic the smoothness and comfortability of silk. Nylon pillowcases are easy to wash.

Linen

Linen is no more popular as a pillowcase material. It has notable benefits such as unique texture and breathability.

The essence of hypoallergene and breathability 

Hypoallergenic pillow cases have become a common preference for many people today.

Dust, mold, dust mites, and mildew are allergens that trigger allergic reactions. Using hypoallergenic pillow cases offers you protection against them.

A breathable pillowcase is one that lets air pass through it. As a result, they don’t get too warm or uncomfortable. Many pillowcases are breathable due to the material used. Cotton and silk, for instance, are breathable materials.

Temperature regulation for optimal comfort

Temperature is a big influence on pillow and sleep comfort. To get the right temperature, pillow choice must be considered. There’s a category of pillows that come with cooling features.

Cooling pillows reduce the temperature around your head, neck, and shoulders. This lets you sleep quickly. It also makes your sleep more comfortable and restful.

How does a cooling pillow work?

A cooling pillow wicks away moisture, dissipating heat and enhancing airflow. The term “cooling” doesn’t imply some sort of freezing feature or technology.

Cooling technology and options

In sourcing for a cooling pillow, two options are most popular. First is a gel-infused pillow. This is a cooling pillow made of a special fabric incorporated into it. It’s this fabric that brings about the moisture-wicking and cooling effect.

There are also pillows with a phase-changing cover. This cover has organic compounds that alternate between liquid and solid forms. The end result of this is a temperature balance.

To ensure temperature regulation for optimal control, you may need beyond cooling pillows. Take the following tips into consideration: 

  • Installing a thermostat is a budget-friendly way to create the right temperature.
  • Turn the thermostat down a few degrees once it’s bedtime. This puts your body to sleep comfortably.

Pillow maintenance for long-term comfort

A properly maintained pillow guarantees long-term comfort than a poorly maintained one. This is why cleaning and care for your pillows should be taken seriously. It’s also imperative to know when to change your pillows.

How do I wash my pillows?

The first step in washing your pillow effectively is to check the label. Determine if it’s washable by machine or otherwise. Once you’ve confirmed its machine washability, bear the following in mind:

  • Pillow washing is best done at every 3–6 months interval. 
  • Wash your pillow with hot water for satisfactory results.
  • Apply a gentle washing approach. A permanent press may damage the material.
  • A mild liquid detergent performs wonders. Fabric softeners aren’t recommended.
  • After a gentle cycle wash, run through your pillow a second time. This time, apply no detergent.

Are fluffing and rotation necessary?

Fluffing your pillow helps to improve its comfort level. Sleeping on a pillow for a long time makes the fill flattened and crunched. This gets it out of shape. Regular fluffing ensures you maintain the original shape and appearance for some time.

Rotation is another way to maintain the comfortability of a pillow long-term. By having more than one pillow, you can substitute at regular intervals. This helps to maintain the shape, loftiness, and density.

How long should I use a pillow?

Your pillow’s lifetime depends on the material and your maintenance habits. On average, down, latex, and memory foam can last for a few years.

There’s a simple test to know if your pillow is due for replacement. Fold it in half and release. It’s time for a change if it doesn’t revert back to a flat position. Ensure you also wash your pillowcases not less than once every week.

Smart sleeping practices beyond pillows

Beyond sleeping with a pillow, achieving comfort in sleep requires extra effort. It’s important to engage in smart sleeping habits.

Creating a consistent bedtime schedule

Craft a sleep schedule and stick to it at all times. Have a fixed time to go to bed. You should also have routine activities to do to encourage sleep every night.

Relaxing ahead of sleep 

Practice relaxation techniques before going to bed. This includes de-stressing, meditating, or even reading your favorite book, among others. These techniques tranquilize your mind, making it easy to fall asleep.

Healthy eating

Know what to eat and not eat before bed. Anything that can disturb your sleep is best avoided. Caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol are popular examples here. It’s also advisable to not eat heavily late at night.

Create an enabling environment

To further improve sleep quality, it’s important to create an ideal environment. For instance, ensure there’s a comfortable temperature in your room. You should also keep your room dark and quiet.

Shutting off all electronics

Avoid using computers, smartphones, tablets, and video games at bedtime. They emit blue light which disrupts your sleep pattern by reducing melatonin levels.

Getting daily exercise

Aerobic exercise can enhance your sleep quality. Consider doing this for a minimum of 30 minutes daily.

Maximize pillow comfort with Sleepgram

Pillow comfort is a product of many factors. Making the right selection is the first and most important step. Pillows with the right features like cooling and hypoallergene are best recommended. Practice good sleep hygiene and maintenance culture to enhance comfort. 

To choose the right pillow, you also have to buy from a reliable source. Sleepgram is that credible online store for quality pillows and pillowcases. Browse our online store today and make your order.