Advertising

How Sleeping Position Affects Your Health: A Complete Guide

Advertising
How Sleeping Position Affects Your Health: A Complete Guide

Did you know that you can sleep your way to better health? It’s true. The way you sleep at night has a direct impact on the way you feel the following day. If you sleep in the wrong position, you’ll suffer needlessly. Here’s a guide to show how your sleeping position affects your health.

Sleeping on your back is like doing yoga

Students at Inspired Yoga in Washington, D.C., perform Corpse Pose, Monday, Sept. 14, 2009. Corpse Pose or savasana is used at the beginning or end of most yoga classes. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Adam Baylor)
    Image via Flickr by aclintonb

    Are you familiar with the Savasana pose in yoga? Instructors have named it the death pose due to its resemblance to lying in a coffin. The underlying thought process is that people are most comfortable when they lie flat on their back. Yoga experts will tell you that Savasana will improve posture, reduce headaches, increase energy, and cure insomnia.

    Advertising

    All these advantages are possible when you train yourself to sleep in this position. You will also enhance the strength and stability of your neck and spine, as long as you pick the perfect mattress. The explanation is that the primary purpose of a mattress is to do much of the work of the Savasana pose. It’ll shape your body as you sleep. The only downside to sleeping on your back is that it might be problematic for people with sleep apnea. Shop around and check out different mattresses that fit the needs of how you sleep. Once you’ve found one you think you may like, you can also read mattress reviews online to make sure that it is the right product for you.

    Sleeping on your stomach damages your neck

    Many people sleep on their stomachs several times a week, if not every night. That’s regrettable due to the lasting damage you can do to various parts of your body, particularly your neck. When you lie on your stomach for a long time, you place undue stress on the upper part of your body. You also constantly bend your unsupported neck the wrong way. It straightens your neck, which can cause a loss of sensation in your extremities in some instances. If your neck doesn’t curve, you’ll have to do exercises to fix the issues.

    Advertising

    That’s not the only problem with sleeping on your stomach. You will also press down too much on your lungs, which can hamper your breathing. If you accidentally bruise a lung, you’ll suffer for weeks due to one bad night’s sleep. No matter how natural sleeping on your stomach might feel, you should avoid it at all costs.

    Sleeping on your left side is good for the heart

    woman lying in bed
      Image via Flickr by Lilmonster Michi

      Sleeping on your left side aids circulation and heart function, as well as keeping pressure off the liver, but did you know that most gynecologists recommend that women sleep on their left side while pregnant? They do this for several reasons. First of all, it’s the most comfortable sleeping position when carrying a child. You’ll find this is especially true as the size of your belly increases. Also, better circulation will provide the added benefit of delivering more nutrients to the baby via the placenta.

      Advertising

      Sleeping on your right side increases acid reflux

      There’s one other reason to tend left. Most people change positions several times each night, which is better for your health anyway. If you fall victim to acid reflux, however, you should train yourself to go left whenever possible. By sleeping on that side, you reduce acid reflux due to the reduction in esophageal build-up. When you go right, you actually increase this issue, which makes insomnia and stomach discomfort more likely.

      Until now, you’ve probably not given a lot of thought to your sleeping position. Now that you’ve read some of the ways it can impact your health, you know that you should have a game plan each night when you go to bed. It should all start with picking the perfect mattress.

      Advertising

      Featured photo credit: Seniju via flickr.com

      More by this author

      6 Simple Foods with Amazing Health Benefits 6 Things to Consider Before Installing a Tankless Water Heater 3 Reasons Why You Should Be Zone Heating Your Home geothermal heat pump 3 Reasons to Install a Geothermal Heat Pump dog The 7 Best Pet Products for Apartment Dwellers

      Trending in Health

      1 10 Simple Ways To Be More Active 2 Think Getting Old Sucks? Here’s Why Aging Doesn’t Have to Suck 3 12 Simple Ways To Stay Healthy At Work 4 Under the Weather? 13 Immune Boosting Foods for a Quick Recovery 5 Poor Sleep Quality Comes from All the Things You Do Since Morning

      Read Next

      Advertising
      Advertising

      Last Updated on November 22, 2021

      Thanksgiving: It’s About The Simple Things

      Advertising
      Thanksgiving: It’s About The Simple Things

      Thanksgiving, a day of pure gluttony, football, and possible uncomfortable situations with family members that you may or may not like. Oh, yeah, and the whole “know and reflect on what it is to be thankful and grateful.”

      During the holiday season many people forget what this time of year is bout and are too worried about getting the “early-bird” deals on Black Friday and making sure that they have the perfect gifts for their loved ones. I am sort of a “Grinch” when it comes to the holiday season, mostly because of that mentality by many of the poeple around me.

      But instead of being grinch-like this holiday season, I decided to simplify things and get back to what this time of year is actually is about; being thankful for what I have and what I can give.

      Advertising

      Simplify

      I’m not a “minimalist” in any real sense, but in the last few months the talks of Patrick Rhone and others have got me to rethink my stance. Can you really have too much stuff?

      Absolutely.

      And with all that stuff comes the burden and the weight of it on your back.

      Advertising

      If you feel that the things around you are out of control, maybe it’s time to simplify and be thankful and grateful for what you have and use. Here are a few things that you can do to simplify:

      • You know those gadgets in the drawer that you said you were going to sell? Well, time to get the listing on eBay and sell them. Or, send them to a place like Gazelle. Even if they are old and won’t get money, you can at least recycle them.
      • Get rid of things you don’t need. Like old books, clothes, tools, etc. Have something that’s been laying around forever with no use? Donate it to a charity or church. If you aren’t using it, someone else could be.
      • Find your productivity tools and stick with them. Use tools and gadgets that serve multiple purposes so you can simplify your tool set.

      Be Mindful

      You don’t have to be a master Buddhist or meditator to be mindful (although, it can definitely help). Being mindful comes down to being cognizant of the present and not keeping yourself in the past or future. It’s about living in the moment and being aware of yourself and everything around you. It’s just being.

      Without getting too “California” on you, it is super important to be mindful during the holiday rush. Rather than worrying about the things that you forgot at your house on the way to relatives or thinking about the next stop in your endless holiday travels, just breath and think about what you are currently doing.

      Advertising

      Spend the time with your family and friends and don’t crush the moment. Try not to concentrate so hard on getting the perfect photo of the “awesome moment” of the day and actually miss the awesome moment.

      Being mindful over the holidays will help you be with your families, friends, and yourself allowing you to enjoy your time.

      Reflect

      As the year is coming to a close (yes, it really is that close!) it’s a great time to start reflecting on what you have accomplished and what you haven’t. Within the next few weeks we will have a more throrough reflection article here at Lifehack.org, but reflecting every now and then over your holiday break is a great way to see where you have been doing well in your life and where you need to improve.

      Advertising

      Reflection shouldn’t be used to “get down” on yourself. Reflection should be used to take an honset inventory of what you have accomplished, how you handeled situations, and what you can do better. If you journal everyday (a daily form of reflection) it may be a good time to start going over some of the things that you have written and start to put together a year’s end journal entry. I mean, how else will you write your autobiography?

      But, seriously, reflecting on yourself makes you aware of your successes and faults and helps you plan and make goals for the coming year. It makes you a better person.

      So, while you are stuffing your face with bird, stuffing, and mashed taters’, remember that the holidays are much more than the superficial things. Use this holiday to become a better person.

      Advertising

      Featured photo credit: Libby Penner via unsplash.com

      Read Next