Everyone knows that it’s important to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep per night, but did you know that how you sleep can affect your overall well-being?

Whether you sleep on your side, your stomach, or your back, the countless hours you spend in these positions are bound to affect your physical health. Sleeping positions are directly linked to many health symptoms, including heartburn, back and neck pain, and snoring! We decided to take a closer look at the three different sleeping positions so that you can know if you need to make a change.

Sleeping on Your Back

Benefits:

Sleeping on your back is incredibly beneficial to the health of your neck and spine! Lying flat on your back while you sleep will support your spine and prevent you from lying in unfavourable positions that could contort your back. Furthermore, research indicates that sleeping on your back will reduce your risk of forming facial wrinkles, as your face will not be pushed up against your pillow for hours.

Disadvantages:

Sleeping on your back makes you more susceptible to snoring, and it has been linked to sleep apnea complications. Additionally, if your bed is old or it lacks proper support, it can be difficult to get a good night’s sleep lying on your back.

Sleeping on Your Side

Benefits:

Studies show that most people lie on their sides to fall asleep. Sleeping on your side promotes healthy blood flow, which is extremely beneficial for pregnant women. Individuals that suffer from heartburn and acid reflux may find it easier to fall asleep on their side than on their stomach or back.

Disadvantages:

Sleeping on your side increases your risk of experiencing “pins and needles” in your arms. As you rest your head against your arms, you risk blocking blood circulation to your arms, which can result in a tingling sensation. Sleeping on your side also shifts your body weight onto your neck shoulders, which can result in upper body discomfort and stiffness.

Sleeping on Your Stomach

Benefits:

Physicians and health care professionals acknowledge that stomach sleeping can help prevent snoring and complications associated with sleep apnea; however, stomach sleeping is strongly discouraged due to the physical strain it puts on your body.

Disadvantages:

Health care professionals agree that sleeping on your stomach is bad for your physical wellbeing. Sleeping on your stomach is hard on your back, and it can affect your spine’s natural angle. Furthermore, because you’ll have to twist your neck to breathe, sleeping on your stomach can lead to tightness in the neck and poor posture.  We’ve worked with many patients experiencing back and neck pain due to stomach sleeping. If you tend to sleep on your stomach, re-adjusting to your side or back will reduce your risk of discomfort and help you correct your posture. For more information, contact 4 Points Health and Wellness today!

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