Pillows have been linked to improved sleep quality, and studies have shown that not using one can strain your back and neck, often leading to extreme body pains. Whether you are a side, back, or stomach sleeper, using a pillow is a great way to relieve stress on your body. Pillows are also known to help align your spine and have been shown to alleviate body pains that result from everyday stress. There are many pillow fills out there, ranging from down to memory foam and many more, but did you know pillows also come in different shapes? One of the many shape options that may perfectly fit you is the bed wedge pillow.
What is a Bed Wedge Pillow?
Bed wedge pillows are special pillows shaped like a triangle or “wedge.” They can be made from any material like standard pillows, but memory foam and latex are often the most popular material choice for a wedge pillow. Although this style is less popular than traditional rectangular pillows, there are many benefits to a bed wedge pillow. Usually made of foam and polyester, bed wedge pillows are perfect for providing structure, comfort, and elevation. People often select wedge pillows because they enjoy their elevated support, but there are numerous health benefits to using a wedge pillow.
Health Benefits of a Wedge Pillow
Wedge pillows are known to help with many health problems. Some of the most common health issues alleviated with the use of a wedge pillow include:
There are many reasons a person may develop back pain, but typically it is due to pressure on the hips and vertebrae. Through improper posture and a sedentary lifestyle, people can misalign their spines. Bed wedge pillows are triangular and have a significantly steeper incline than the traditional pillow, which can help correct this misalignment. In addition, wedge pillows have been proven to be especially effective at relieving strain in people that suffer from upper back pain.
Sinus issues are common with the colder months, allergies, and the global pandemic. Sleeping at an incline can help alleviate many sinus issues, including post-nasal drip since the angle helps your body drain properly. The lack of sinus pressure can also help relieve cold and flu symptoms and improve sleep quality. Post-nasal drip causes mucus to drip into your airways, leading to a chronic cough, but the elevation from a wedge pillow should substantially alleviate this issue. Mucus cannot pool in your airways when you sleep on an incline.
Snoring is a result of airflow traveling through your tissues. The hoarse noise is the sound of your relaxed tissues vibrating. Snoring is much more prevalent in people who sleep without a pillow because of gravity’s pressure on the respiratory system. Some chronic snorers will also develop sleep apnea, where you may stop breathing in your sleep. Sleeping on a wedge pillow helps alleviate the pressure of gravity on your respiratory system and reduce the chances of snoring.
Like snoring, asthma can be onset by the pressure from gravity on the respiratory system. Nighttime asthma is often due to the effects o gravity and can lead to blood filling into the lungs, and sleeping at an incline should significantly reduce this risk.
Physicians often recommend wedge pillows following specific procedures. The incline of a wedge pillow can help reduce inflammation, irritation, and pain in certain areas. Wedge pillows support backs but can also be used under the knee; some recovering patients have two pillows for dual usage. The gentle slope can help alleviate any pain from surgery and improve circulation in the operated area.
Acid reflux is caused by stomach acid pooling at the back of your esophagus, and it is heightened at night when you lay horizontally. Without the proper elevation, some people may experience acid reflux and cough or choke in their sleep. Using a wedge pillow can help use gravity to your advantage as stomach acid will not flow down your throat if you are elevated.
Many pregnant mothers know it is essential to sleep on their side to provide adequate circulation for themselves and their children. It is also the best position because it alleviates the most pressure on their organs. Unfortunately, sleeping on your side can prove to be uncomfortable for some mothers, and many women have attributed some relief to wedge pillows. The pillow’s unique shape can be tucked between the leg to help support the mother and alleviate lower body pressure.