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When it comes to comfort and support, choosing the best pillow is just as important as choosing the right mattress. Knowing when you should replace your pillows is important, a pillow that doesn't provide enough support can lead to neck and back pain, as well as affecting your sleeping patterns. In this post, we will discuss the different types of pillows and how to choose the best pillow for your needs.
When choosing a pillow, the main considerations are:
The most important factor when choosing a pillow is your usual sleeping position. The three main sleeping positions are side sleeping, front/stomach sleeping, and back sleeping. Each position benefits from a different type of pillow, so it's essential to keep in mind which position you mostly sleep in.
The best pillow for side sleepers is one that provides adequate support and comfort. Check out our full guide to the best pillows for side sleepers. Here's a quick overview what to look for from a pillow as a side sleeper:
Firmness: The pillow should be firm enough to support your head and neck, but not so firm that you end up with a stiff neck. Latex or buckwheat fillings are recommended for side sleepers as they provide the support and firmness needed.
Pillow depth: Side sleepers need a deep pillow to ensure their head and neck are in neutral alignment with the spine. This will relieve pressure in the shoulder and prevent neck and back pain.
If you're a back sleeper, the best pillow for you should provide enough support to keep your head and neck comfortable and in alignment with the spine. Here's what to look for:
Firmness: A medium-firm pillow is recommended for back sleepers as it provides the right support without flattening your head overnight.
Pillow depth: The pillow should be of medium depth to prevent neck and back pain. If the pillow is too deep, it will raise your head upwards, causing pressure in your neck. If the pillow is too low, it will flatten your head, causing more pain. Memory foam fillings are recommended for back sleepers as they provide the right firmness and support.
If you're a stomach sleeper, your pillow should be soft and not prop up your head too much. Here's what to look for:
Firmness: A soft pillow filled with feathers or compressed fillings is recommended for stomach sleepers.
Pillow depth: A low-depth pillow is recommended for stomach sleepers to keep a flat surface while sleeping on your stomach.
Apart from the factors already covered, there are also some personal preferences you may want to keep in mind when shopping for a pillow. You should also ask yourself how many pillows you should sleep with, some prefer multiple pillows, some prefer one, as with may sleeping preferences, the choice is personal.
While support is a basic need, some customers may prefer the option to remove or add fillings to their pillow. Some prefer a firm pillow, some people prefer a soft fluffy pillow. Neck support is critical, learn more in our best pillows for neck pain guide.
Some customers prefer pillows with natural and organic fillings, so consider this when shopping if it's important to you.
Some people don't like a pillow that gets "hot", this type of sleeper, along with women experiencing menopause symptoms may want to invest in a pillow more suited to their temperature at night. Cooling pillows may help with night-time sweats and generally help you feel cooler.
The best pillow for allergies, is one made of hypoallergenic materials. Synthetic fillings, memory foam, latex, and buckwheat are all naturally hypoallergenic and resistant to allergens like dust mites. It is also important to maintain pillow hygiene, our guide How To Wash Pillows explains when and how to wash pillows.
This leads us to our next consideration, Pillow Filling.
The filling of the pillow is another important factor to consider, in terms of both preferred pillow firmness and when considering allergies. The most common types of pillow fillings are:
Down and Feather Pillows
Down and feather pillows are popular for their soft and fluffy feel. They provide good support and conform to the head and neck for a comfortable sleep. However, they can be prone to flattening over time, and may not be suitable for those with allergies.
Synthetic fillings are often made from polyester and provide a budget-friendly alternative to down and feather pillows. They are hypoallergenic and can provide good support, but may not have the same level of softness and comfort as natural fillings.
Memory Foam Pillows
Memory foam pillows are a popular choice for those looking for extra support and pressure relief. They are designed to conform to the shape of the head and neck, providing customized support and comfort.
Latex pillows are naturally hypoallergenic and provide good support and pressure relief. They are also durable and resistant to flattening over time.
Buckwheat pillows are filled with hulls from the buckwheat plant, which provide a unique and customizable level of support. They are also naturally hypoallergenic and resistant to flattening. This is the best choice for most people with allergies.
Choosing the best pillow for a good night’s sleep requires careful consideration of your sleeping position, firmness and depth preferences, and any allergies or specific needs. With the right pillow, you can ensure maximum comfort and support for a peaceful and rejuvenating sleep. By taking the time to choose the right pillow, you can improve the quality of your sleep, and in turn, your overall well-being.