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5 Tips for Buying the Right Pillow to Avoid Neck Pains

5 Tips for Buying the Right Pillow to Avoid Neck Pains

Have you ever woken in the morning with a stiff neck? Do you have trouble falling asleep? Do you have periodic neck pains? These could be caused by your pillow.

Although the neck pains could go away after some time, the uneasiness may remain. The neck pain could get worse and this can hurt your normal routine. Don’t overlook this problem. You should get to the root of the problem and get it addressed.

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The Causes of Neck Pain

The neck and spine area need proper support when you are sleeping. If proper support is not there, then neck pains and backaches can be expected. Sleeping position can be a factor, but to fix this problem , you should purchase the right pillow that matches your sleeping habits.

Changing your pillow can solve the problem. You will not feel neck pain unless you have some other condition besides a poor choice in pillow. You can purchase a Memory Foam pillow with cushioning.

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How to Choose the Right Pillow

You should research causes and pillow types before choosing your preferred pillows for neck pain. You don’t want to  rush into a department store and choose one off the shelf. You have to consider certain factors to find the perfect pillow that would address your neck pains. Here are the factors that you need to consider.

  1. The pillow needs to be wide enough to fit your head and neck. Most people feel that the backs of their head is the only body parts that have to be rested on the pillow. This is a big misconception because aside from the head, the neck should also be rested on the pillow. With the head and neck properly supported, neck and back pains can be avoided.
  2. Stick to using a single pillow for your head. You can have other pillows but they should be for other purposes. Having too many pillows beneath your head can cause your head to tilt resulting in pressure on your neck areas.
  3. Pick a pillow that suits your sleeping position. If you sleep on your back, you would not have any preferences because any pillow will work, but, if you are a side sleeper or you sleep on your stomach, you need to pick a pillow that is slightly flat and well-cushioned. This is to ensure your neck would not get strained by your unorthodox sleeping position.
  4. Side sleepers are also advised to have a body or knee pillow to make sure that their backs are kept straight throughout the night. The body or knee pillow will prevent your knees from knocking together while you are asleep, relieving stress from your spinal area.
  5. You have to know the material inside your pillow. Some materials can be potential allergens that would cause allergies and irritations to your skin. Some materials are better for sleeping than others. It is important to note the material used for the pillow. Silk and soft cotton are good materials that you can opt for a pillow.

Remember that not all pain is relieved with the right pillow. Chronic pain might be indicative of a much larger problem, such as cancer in your spine or shoulders, headaches or stress. If you have found the perfect pillow for your slumber, but you still experience pain, you should visit a doctor to discuss possibilities.

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In addition, to release tension in your neck, you could try acupuncture or massage therapy. Both of these treatments complement other options available to you. Visiting your doctor, acupuncture, and massage therapy along with the proper pillow should relieve your stiff neck. I hope these tips help you solve your neck pain.

Featured photo credit: http://www.health.harvard.edu/ via health.harvard.edu

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

1. Exercise Daily

It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

3. Acknowledge Your Limits

Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

The basic nutritional advice includes:

  • Eat unprocessed foods
  • Eat more veggies
  • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
  • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

    5. Watch Out for Travel

    Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

    This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

    If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

    6. Start Slow

    Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

    If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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    7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

    Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

    My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

    If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

    I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

    Final Thoughts

    Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

    Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

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    Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

    Reference

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