Sleeping well is essential to functioning properly each day — and whether you get quality sleep depends on various factors. From finding the right room temperature to choosing the right mattress, how well these factors go together can influence your sleep quality. However, some elements play a larger role than others, such as what type of pillow you choose.
Your pillow plays an important role in the quality of your sleep. It functions as your support throughout the night, fixing your posture and keeping your spine in alignment. Given its importance, it’s crucial to know how to choose a pillow and why it’s essential to find what’s right for your needs.
Why it’s important to choose the right pillow
Sleeping patterns and preferences can vary from person to person, and your pillows should be tailored to suit these differences. Having the right comfort pillow that suits your sleep patterns can yield the following benefits:
- Alleviates body aches by providing the right support
- Improves breathing and reduces snoring
- Aligns your upper back with your neck and head
- Ensures comfortable sleep throughout the night
- Relieves allergies if made with certain materials
A step-by-step guide on how to choose a pillow for your bed
Choosing the right pillow entails a few steps and some research. Get started by reviewing our guide on choosing the right comfort pillow for your needs.
1. Determine your sleeping position
To maintain a healthy posture and foster comfortable sleep, different types of pillows are needed for different sleeping positions. Do you sleep on your back, stomach, side or a combination of all three? By getting an idea of your most frequent sleeping positions, you can determine which pillow is right for you.
2. Consider the pillow’s height
The pillow’s height, or loft, will help keep your neck and head elevated while providing the proper support. Pillows can come in low, medium or high lofts. Use the following as a guide when looking for comfort pillows:
- For back sleepers — Back sleepers require a medium-height pillow. This relieves pressure from your neck and shoulders while cushioning your head.
- For tummy sleepers — A low-loft comfort pillow is essential for tummy sleepers, as it can help avoid your head craning upwards.
- For side sleepers — If you sleep on your side, a high loft pillow can help keep your spine in alignment. As a result, your shoulder won't take the brunt of your body's weight, as it's relieved of pressure.
3. Decide on your level of comfort or firmness
The firmness of your pillow determines how much support you get. Typically, firmness is available in three levels: soft, medium and firm. Softer pillows let your head sink in, while the firmer end of the spectrum ensures the pillow retains its shape and provides maximum support.
Generally, medium soft pillows are great for all kinds of sleepers — especially those who change positions frequently. However, if you find you mainly sleep in one position, use the following recommendations to guide you:
- For back sleepers — A comfort pillow with medium firmness is recommended to support your body properly. This allows your head to sink in just a touch without the pillow losing its shape overnight. In addition, it keeps your spine aligned while supporting your back and shoulders.
- For tummy sleepers — For tummy sleepers, a soft pillow is best to ensure your head is not too high from the mattress, which will avoid a sore neck.
- For side sleepers — If you frequently sleep on your side, a firm pillow is essential to ensure your head and neck are aligned with your spine throughout the night. However, if this is too uncomfortable, a medium pillow can also provide the right support.
4. Choose a fill
A pillow's fill plays a major role in how it holds up over time, supports your head and neck and how comfortable you will be while sleeping. There are several types of pillow filling when choosing the right pillow, such as:
- Memory foam
- Polyester and microfibre
- Copper-infused foam
- Graphite-infused foam
With a wide range of materials available, it can be challenging to determine what’s best for you. Generally, polyester is a popular choice and a good all-rounder, while memory foam is best if you need ample support. If you aren’t sure where to start or want something more specific to your sleeping position, use our recommendations as a starting point:
- For back sleepers — If you sleep on your back frequently, you can opt for materials such as latex or memory foam. Our Latex Flexi Pillow is a customisable option that can provide the perfect support for your neck and body in most positions.
- For tummy sleepers — Microfibre, memory foam and down pillows are great for stomach sleepers. The Downia Classique Collection White Duck Down Pillow, for instance, is perfect as it provides a luxury hotel pillow feel with all the right support.
- For side sleepers — Side sleepers can benefit from a body comfort pillow made of gel or latex. For instance, our Gel Contour Flexi Pillow is great for relieving pressure from your shoulders while providing cooling relief.
5. Add your wants into the mix
When you’ve finally found the pillow best suited for your needs, you can add a few of your desires into the mix. This can include looking for pillows with cooling qualities or customisable support. You may also want a natural or organic pillow, especially if you have sensitive skin.
Make the search easy with comfort pillows from Mattress & Pillow Science
Finding the best comfort pillow for your body can take time and research. After all, we spend a third of our lives in bed, making it important to find ways to support our posture and overall health.If you have questions about what pillow you should purchase, contact Mattress & Pillow Science today. Our team of experts can provide you with various choices best suited to your sleeping habits.