Across the globe, many people wake up with debilitating neck pain or stiffness. There are many causes for neck pain, but mostly your sleeping position and types of pillow are Underlying cause. In this article, we’ll explain to you how orthopedic pillow can help relieve neck pain. Neck stiffness and pain Our neck is made of several joints, disks, and bones, which experience regular wear And tear because of poor exercise or sleep posture. The neck, however, is different from the rest of the spine, as it has the least amount of support available. Because of this, it is susceptible to injury and chronic pain conditions. Causes of neck pain: ● Muscle strain: muscle strain leads to soreness and is caused by bad sitting or sleeping posture. ● Injury: if you injure your neck while driving, exercising, or any other activity, then you’ll experience neck pain. ● Cervical spondylitis: because of a wearing down of disks between the neck’s vertebrae, the patient experiences pain and stiffness. ● Cervical radiculopathy: When a nerve becomes compressed or irritated, it causes pain at the spot and sometimes along the nerve path. ● Spinal stenosis: because of a narrowing of the spinal canal, the nerve roots get compressed and cause pain. ● Meningitis: the membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord get inflamed because of infection from virus or bacteria. The condition is accompanied by fever. ● Cancer: tumors can compress the nerve roots in the spine, leading to pain and stiffness. Although we’ve mentioned most of the reasons, you need not go for the worst conclusion. However, if your neck pain has lasted for more than 6 weeks, then you should get a diagnosis from your doctor. Orthopedic pillows An orthopedic memory foam pillow provides an additional layer of support for your neck. While using the right pillow provides good support to the neck, cervical pillows are especially designed to provide extra support and better alignment to relieve symptoms of neck pain. Can orthopedic neck pillows relieve pain symptoms? According to a 2018 study, ergonomic neck pillows, along with physical therapy, can relieve neck pain symptoms in people suffering from cervical spondylitis. So yes, cervical pillows are capable of ameliorating neck pain, but it’s important to get the right ergonomic pillow, because a lot depends on the pillow height and fill. Cervical pillows are great for all types of sleepers. They’re perfectly capable of providing good support to both back and side sleepers. Let’s look at the same in more detail: Back Sleepers Cervical pillows have a butterfly design, which offers a depression where you can rest your head. The protruded part of the orthopedic bamboo pillow then provides additional support to the neck even when you move around while sleeping. Side Sleepers Side sleepers need to relieve stress from both the neck and shoulders to reduce pain. Cervical pillows can do so by simply offering a good protrusion which always supports the neck. For Stomach Sleepers When suffering from neck pain, it is better to not sleep on your stomach, as this sleeping position maximizes the strain on your cervical and lumbar spine. So refrain from sleeping on your stomach. Cervical pillows and night sweat? Cervical pillows are very cool because they promote airflow. The depression helps the pillow in staying cool throughout the night. Orthopedic Cervical Pillow Fill We recommend that you go with a memory foam fill, as this material is famous for providing support by cradling the neck. Let’s look at some benefits offered by memory foam: Extra support While normal cervical pillow materials such as down and feather are good, they don’t provide good support to the cervical spine. However, memory foam has the ability to mold when pressure or heat is applied to it, so it cradles the neck when you go to sleep. This extra support is consistent, as even when you move around when sleeping, memory foam keeps adapting because of its malleability. Hypoallergenic If you have a sensitive skin, then using allergy causing material isn’t an option. Luckily, memory foam is hypoallergenic, meaning that it rarely causes allergy in people with sensitive skin. And the material is naturally dust and dust mite resistant. What to look for in a cervical pillow? Select a cervical pillow that has a butterfly design and contains a memory foam fill. Further, ensure that the material used in the pillow is CertiPUR-US® certified: ● Material is approved and safe to use ● Good quality ● Flame retardant ● Is low in volatile inorganic compound emissions, which may worsen the indoor air quality ● Is free of heavy metals such as mercury and lead A certified pillow is safe for both adults and children. Sleeping Position and Posture As you may know, you’re sleeping position and posture is the core factors that determine the long term health of your neck and lower back. If you don’t sleep correctly and use the right pillow, you’re cervical or lumbar spine will experience wear and tear, and overtime, you may develop chronic pain. So here are some quick and dirty tips that you can employ to correct your sleeping posture: Back Sleepers Back sleepers should purchase a pillow with a loft of 4-6 inches. And the pillow, ideally, should be medium firm. Placing a pillow beneath your knees puts your lumbar spine in a more natural and relaxed position. So if you have lower back pain or are recovering from an injury, then simply place a pillow beneath your knees. Side Sleepers To reduce strain from shoulders, side sleepers should use a pillow that has a loft of 5-7 inches. And to ensure that your head doesn’t sink into the memory foam cervical pillow and puts additional stress on your shoulder, the pillow should be firm. Side sleepers should place a pillow between their knees. This prevents the top leg from sliding back down, preventing the lumbar spine from getting into an unnatural twisted position. Stomach Sleepers Although we strongly advise against stomach sleeping, people often default to their natural sleeping position. So stomach sleepers should use a very flat pillow and place a pillow below their Abdomen, decreasing stress from both the cervical and lumbar spine. Mattress Selection Apart from your pillow, your mattress also impacts the health of your muscles and joints. A mattress that is too firm will put additional pressure on your lower back and knee joints. On the other hand, a soft mattress will fail to provide good support. You need to find a mattress that provides the right balance of softness and firmness according to your body type. Conclusion Orthopedic cervical pillow , along with good sleeping posture and physical therapy, may cure your neck pain. However, you must remember to make good sleeping habits a part of your life; otherwise, you’ll develop neck pain and stiffness again and again.