Several types of research show that 90% of the problems of headaches, torticollis, neck pain, low back pain and muscular pain are due to poor sleep on inadequate mattresses. What is the best position to have a good night’s sleep and maintain spine health? How to choose the right mattress? And the pillow? The issues have a lot of origins because there are thousands of types of mattresses and pillows, not to mention the different habits regarding the act of sleeping and the position of the body during sleep. A good night’s sleep not only brings us good humor and tranquility to face daily life as it directly influences the health of the spine. As an orthopedist, this is the point I want to emphasize within the topic of sleeping well.
You should not continue sleeping on a mattress that is not in good condition. And when should you change the mattress? Observe the guarantee period which, in general, is the same as the validity. Dirty or torn cover, uneven surface, and localized depressions are good indications that the timing of the exchange has come. If at bedtime you feel the base of the mattress, this time has passed. In addition to the hassles, an old mattress can cause diseases like kyphosis and lordosis – the major spinal problems, which can be the result of a very old or inadequate mattress. It is important to remember that the spine is not hard or soft; Is firm, flexible. When taking these features into consideration, it is obvious that the best choice will be a mattress that meets this profile.
It is very common for the person to sleep in a bad way or for a sudden movement to be with localized pain or with that stronger pain, radiated by the musculature in the dorsal region. Therefore, one must always be attentive and sleep with a straight spine. If the person usually sleeps on their belly up, the pillow should be soft and thin, just to fill the space between the nape of the neck and the mattress. The feather is very soft and becomes thin with the weight of the head. If the person has the habit of sleeping on the side, the best is the foam pillow, high enough to fill the space between the head and the mattress, created by the shoulder. The choice between one and the other becomes more difficult when the person switches position during sleep. Tips for maintaining spinal health at bedtimeIt is contraindicated to sleep on your stomach (tummy down).
Better sleep on mattress for side sleeper or back sleeper, in the fetal position. With the body in contact with the mattress, the spine should always be straight. For this, count on the help of pillows for support, regardless of the sleeping position. From the back, this is belly up, the pillow to support the head may be thin considering the height of the glutes. In the fetal position, the head pillow should have shoulder height, and the use of two small pillows can bring more comfort: one to be placed on the knees and another to hug, to give more support to the arms crossed.
Avoid sleeping on a mattress of density not indicated for your weight and height. The very hard mattress is not comfortable, but too soft does not give support to the heavier parts of the body, such as hips, shoulders, and thighs, causing the body sinks in the regions that concentrate more mass, which leaves the spine crooked.
Use pillows of different sizes to help the spine to stay straight. By the way, keeping your spine straight is the best way to keep it healthy for a lifetime. Posture must be maintained at the time of sitting, walking, lying or standing. In bed, relax and have sweet dreams! Dr. Fabio Ravaglia