Sleeping Positions Can Adversely Affect Snoring: Know How?
Whether you are sleeping alone or with a partner, sleeping on your side, the most common sleeping position, is super comfortable and it works really well for spooning! Do you know whether sleeping on your side is bad for you or not?
Stomach sleepers are putting themselves at risk of back pain while back sleepers are more prone to snoring and sleep apnea. But what about those who sleep on the side?
It is more common among women than men according to the On Health website as 41 percent of us are sleeping in this way.
CNN reports that sleeping in the fetal position is good for preventing back and neck pain as it keeps your spine elongated on the plus side.
As your airways are not as obstructed as when you sleep on your back it also stops you from snoring.
It is also the best way to sleep if you are pregnant as it helps to boost the circulation to both you and the baby, on Health Reports.
If you are prone to acid reflux and heartburn this is the best sleeping position for you, preferably sleeping on the left side according to Eight Mattress website.
Thanks to the location of the relevant organs, sleeping on your side can also boost your digestion and stimulate the removal of toxins from your lymph nodes, the site states.
Sleeping On Your Side Good or Bad?
Now for the bad news. While it may be good for your overall health, sleeping on your side could be wreaking havoc with your skin.
Sleeping on the side can cause wrinkles as stated by Dee Anna Glaser, professor of dermatology at Saint Louis University. As it is a natural part of ageing nobody should feel bad about getting wrinkles.
Sleeping on your side puts pressure on your skin as it is pressed into the pillow on a nightly basis causing a drag effect and stretching the skin. This is confirmed by Health magazine.
According to Health magazine’s medical editor Roshinin Rajapaksa, it can also alter the shape of your boobs. As reported by CNN, this position forces your breasts to hang downwards, stretching the ligaments and causing a sagging effect.
Sleeping on your back can worsen obstructive sleep apnea and can also cause other sleep disorders. However a good quality sleep apnea mouthpiece can help cure OSA.
It can also put pressure on the stomach and lungs according to Greatist website while sleeping on the left side can be good for digestion.
If sleeping on your side means that you are resting on your arm, you will be restricting blood flow to your arm and hand and pressing down on the nerves meaning that you might find yourself with a dead arm come morning and pins and needles as the circulation is restored.
As Greatist reports that another downside is the pressure which you are putting on your shoulder which will be supporting you sleeping on your side.
How Sleeping Position Can Affect Your Skin?
The downsides are mostly cosmetic as there are strong health benefits to sleeping on your side compared with other positions.
To minimize the impact on your skin there are things which you can do. This may sound Kardashian-level extravagance but it is so much kinder on your skin and it has been proven to reduce wrinkles: discard your cotton pillow cases and replace them with silk.
For neck and shoulder pain, a different pillow could be the cure to the other side-keeping induced woes too.
Christopher Winter, medical director of Martha Jefferson Hospital Sleep Medicine Center and the author of the upcoming book The Sleep Solution, told Health magazine: You need something which keeps the head and neck in place and even separating the knees can create that neutral position which you want to maintain while you sleep.
He went on to stress the importance of selecting firm pillows with contours for neck and head.
Never forget your night cream for extra protection against the skin damage. Super-concentrated creams fortified with Vitamins C and E and hyaluronic acid which will plump up your skin so slap it on and sleep easy, suggests Marie Claire.
Consider supporting your sleep position if you are dealing with health issues which are caused by your sleep positions but you are unable to change the way in which you sleep.
Back, side, fetal and stomach are the four main sleep positions. With the proper support each has their pros and cons which can be improved. Know more about different sleeping positions and their pros and cons.
As it can prevent neck and back pain and minimizing wrinkles, the back position is the best sleep position.
As there is nothing pushing on your face it can help prevent wrinkles when you sleep on your back which keeps your neck, head, and spine in a neutral position.
The only problem with sleeping on your back is the increased tendency to snore. Use one pillow to keep your neck and head supported to help support a back sleeping position.
To incline at a minimum angle and not prop your head too much is the key.
The next best position is sleeping in your side, as it can prevent neck and back pain and causes less snoring. Because the spine is elongated it is the recommended position for pregnant women also. But the main drawback is that it can cause wrinkles.
If you sleep on your back, the likelihood is, you’re snoring. Benjamin Smarr, National Institutes of Health Postdoctoral Fellow at UC Berkeley and Reverie sleep board member says sleep position is essential.
He explains, “One of the best things to do if you snore is to optimize your sleeping aspect and to ensure that you've got good neck support.
Each facilitates keeping your neck from bending an excessive amount of and opening your airways as you sleep.