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Your Sleeping Position and How it Affects your Health

June 12, 2017


What the way you sleep does to your general health

Sleep is one of the vital functions needed for our bodies to operate at their best. Without it, not only would we wandering around like zombies, bodies would suffer too. There is so much happening behind the scenes when we sleep that we don’t really think about very often. The most obvious is rest, but our bodies repair themselves at a cellular level, they regenerate and heal, it is also when our minds consolidate and process everything that has been learnt or experienced during the day. Good quality sleep is essential.

One of the major things that have an effect on our quality of sleep is the way we sleep, quite literally. Tummy, back, left side, right side, foetal position. Each of these positions has an impact on the way the body rests, and so therefore on the way you sleep.

Don’t get your back up

Sleeping on your back is the best position for your spine, offering the best support, provided you are sleeping on a mattress that doesn’t sag or is not too soft, and as long as your neck is supported by good quality pillow/s, and that you are not using too many pillows. So, if you have all of these elements correct, you can rest assured knowing that you won’t wake up and hobble out of bed because of back ache. It is also said to prevent facial wrinkles and skin breakouts, but there is no scientific evidence to support this claim. It also reduces acid reflux and heartburn.While your back might be the best position for your back, if you are a snorer and share your bed with a partner, it might not be the best position or your relationship or your longevity. Sleeping on your back is most likely to induce homicidal thoughts towards you from your partner if you are at all prone to snoring. Sleeping on your back restricts your airwaves, therefore restricting how you breathe and can lead to chronic snoring and sleep apnoea.

Tummy Time

If you have managed to master the art of breathing through our pillow sleeping on your tummy is also a great position for optimal spinal alignment. But the reality is unless you are sleeping on a massage bed, when you sleep on your tummy you inevitably end up turning your head to one side or the other. According to most chiropractors, this is a definite no-no for your neck and also puts pressure on your back because its natural curvature is compromised. But for many of us, this is a comfortable position to fall asleep in as it takes us back to when we were babies and put to sleep on our tummies.

To the left, to the left

This is reported to be the best of all the sleeping positions. While sleeping on either side is considered good, the left side has particular health benefits.

  • It’s good for digestion. Not only does lying on your side reduce the chance of acid reflux and indigestion, but it also improves your digestion. You see, by lying on your left side you are putting less pressure on your liver so that it can operate more efficiently and increase bile production that assists your body to absorb nutrients more efficiently.
  • According to Ayurvedic principles, the left side of your body is the side where you lymphatic system operates most effectively, so sleeping on this side you are improving the way in which your body drains itself of toxins.
  • Some research has shown that sleeping on the left-hand side can improve how the brain eliminates waste, and thus preventing neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Disease.
  • Sleeping on your left side improves your circulation. This is particularly important for pregnant women.

Right Side Up

Some reports claim that sleeping on your right side improves the quality of your dreams. More people who sleep on their left side suffer from nightmares than those who sleep on their right. Sleeping on your right has side also takes the pressure off some of your organs including your lungs and kidneys.

Whatever position you choose to sleep in, it is absolutely essential that what you are sleeping ON is giving you support and making you comfortable. If your bed is too soft or too hard, sags or doesn’t offer adequate cushioning and comfort then no matter which position you sleep in, your quality of sleep will be compromised. So, why not visit your nearest Bed King to check out our range of beds and improve your quality of sleep straight away.


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