Did you know that neck pain, stiff necks and even persistent headaches could simply be the result of poor pillow support while in bed sleeping?
One that is too soft will allow the head to flop, curving the neck. One that is too hard will give you a crick in the neck.
As with shopping for a new bed, you should try out different types of pillows before making your final decision. Pillows should be tucked well into the neck and shoulder to support the head fully. Too many pillows will cause the spine to curve upwards and the skin to crease on the top of your neck. Too low or thin a pillow will make the spine curve downwards and cause a crease on the underside of the neck.
The most popular are the polyester filled type – available in a variety of feels from very soft to very firm – and a broad range of prices. Better quality polyester pillows can be machine-washed. Branded fibres are often an assurance of quality. Down/feather pillows offer a luxurious give and excellent durability. Many also wash very well.
The softness – and cost – will go up in proportion to the percentage of down it contains. Check labels carefully for quality assurance and beware: some people can have an allergic reaction to down or feathers. Foam and latex pillows tend to be firm with a definite bounce to them. They hold their shape very well and are considered hypo-allergenic. However it is recommended that special barrier covers are also used by anyone with asthma or other breathing problems or eczema. The price range is again broad.
Also available are lumbar support pillows to prop you up comfortably in bed. Because pillows affect your sleeping posture and lie next to your skin and your nostrils, it is a good idea to invest in quality pillows and replace them at least every two or three years for a healthy sleeping environment.
When they have lost their ‘loft’ (height ) and become lumpy, discolored or misshapen they are definitely ready for replacement. Remember, an old, unwashed pillow could also contain as much as 10 per cent of its weight in skin scale mould, dead and living dust mites and their allergen laden droppings!
For expert advice on choosing the pillow that is right for you contact Better Bedding, Sean Mulvoy Road, Galway. Telephone (091 ) 756766.