Orthopedic Pillows

Orthopedic Pillows For Neck Pain

Neck pain can be a minor problem, with muscle soreness or stiffness, to a chronic condition that causes much distress and disability. Whiplash injuries, irritated nerves from herniated discs and disc degeneration can make sleeping a nightmare. With sleep so important for healing, orthopedic pillows can help provide a solution to standard type pillows.

Doctors often recommend pillows that are orthopedically designed to provide a stable and ergonomically correct posture for side and back sleeping. This can help reduce strain on painful muscles, joints and discs to allow for better sleep.

Since much of the time is spent in a sleeping position, it can have a great influence on pain and overall health. Sleeping is restorative; it can help reduce stress and give our bodies a chance to rest and heal from the demands of everyday life. These pillows can not only help with neck pain, but may allow one to relax better and feel more refreshed in the morning, ready for a new day.

Benefits of Orthopedic Pillows

Orthopedic is defined as correction of deformities of bones or muscles. So, they are corrective pillows regarding problems with muscles and bones. This relates not only to the neck, but the head, shoulders and upper back as well, seeking the ultimate in postural alignment.

They often use separate areas or sections specifically designed for either back or side sleeping called functional pillows. This helps to avoid the neck being too high or too low when back sleeping, and keeps the spine level when sleeping on the side. Because of the shoulders, side sleeping requires one to have the head at a higher level than when back sleeping. Pillows that are anatomically designed take this into consideration by incorporating two distinct areas for these positions to avoid deformation.

Some also come in different sizes, because one size pillow does not fit all when maximizing personal alignment. Taking a simple measurement related to the shoulders permits choosing the correct size pillow for your body. These measurements correspond to small, medium and large builds, because size is no limitation for neck pain, and finding the correct size pillow for your particular body can make all the difference.

By incorporating high quality materials, pillow performance as well as durability are maximized. This does make a difference when it comes to relief from neck pain. For acute conditions that have inflammation like arthritis flare-ups, muscle strain, herniated or bulging discs, stability as well as comfort is important.

Many find less morning neck stiffness using orthopedic pillows compared to standard pillows. They also help to maintain benefits of office visits and rehabilitation for neck injuries, which can be lost by sleeping on a pillow that stresses the joints and muscles. In fact, ergonomic neck pillows can help provide therapy while you sleep by maintaining optimal alignment of the muscles and bones. These benefits can be transferred to the entire spine, thus improving overall health.

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While designed for neck pain symptoms, those without cervical spine problems that are looking for a new pillow can benefit from posture stress relieving pillows. Sleeping in the right posture can help prevent neck issues from arising. In today’s fast paced society, many can benefit from specially designed pillows and the restorative sleep they promote.

Choosing Orthopedic Pillows

There are different kinds of pillows. There are those that are fiber filling based, some have one type of foam, others use a combination of different foams, or a combination of foam and fiber. Look for separate sections for back and side sleeping or accommodation for the differences in height required, which can be attained using water or air pillow.

Fiber ones tend to be more cooling, however, they will break down sooner due to fiber migration. The foam and fiber combinations can provide a firm, stable pillow. The all foam orthopedic pillows have a large range of size, are medium in firmness, but tend to lack stability for acute conditions. The foam combinations provide both stability and comfort and may be best for recent injuries, surgery recovery or flare-ups of chronic conditions. Most standard or uniform surface orthopedic pillows are very versatile in that they allow for using the pillow in different ways, like changing the position of the pillow to provide contour options regarding level of support.

Whatever the choice is, they are designed to be good for your neck as well as entire body. They are frequently recommended by medical, chiropractic and physical therapy health care providers to help with neck pain and/or sleeping difficulties. Some have a favorite, but theirs may not be the best for you. In choosing one, it may be a good idea to consult your doctor if you have a specific condition. Sometimes, with conditions that are advanced like disc degeneration, you may need a size that differs from the standard measurements. Sometimes, after surgery, your neck needs to be in a more flexed position, requiring a higher height pillow. Some orthopedic pillows can also help restrict head rolling by providing a stable cradle when back sleeping, helping to minimize any further damage.

Author Bio

Stephen Ornstein, D.C. has treated thousands of neck, shoulder and back conditions since graduating Sherman Chiropractic College in 1987 and during his involvement in Martial Arts. He holds certifications as a Peer Review Consultant from New York Chiropractic College, Physiological Therapeutics from National Chiropractic College, Modic Antibiotic Spinal Therapy from Dr. Hanne Albert, PT., MPH., Ph.D., Myofascial Release Techniques from Logan Chiropractic College, and learned Active Release Technique from the founder, P. Michael Leahy, DC, ART, CCSP.