There are pros and cons to every sleeping position. Stomach sleeping is said to be good for reducing sleep apnea symptoms, such as snoring. Side sleeping is often recommended for pregnant women and those suffering from digestive issues or sinus problems. But according to the general consensus, back sleeping is the best sleeping position for most healthy adults. Experts say that this position keeps the body in proper alignment, which helps reduce stress on the muscles and ligaments of the spine.
If you don’t sleep on your back but want to train yourself to be a back sleeper, you’ve come to the right place. Keep reading to learn more about the benefits of back sleeping and how to train yourself to sleep on your back.
What Are the Benefits of Sleeping on Your Back?
The benefits of back sleeping include:
- Keeping your spine in proper alignment
- Reducing tension headaches
- Helping chronic conditions by reducing pressure on the body
- Relieving sinus buildup
- Avoiding wrinkles and reducing acne breakouts
How to Train Yourself to Sleep on Your Back
Training yourself to sleep on your back isn’t difficult, but keep in mind that you’ve likely been sleeping in the same position since you were a young child. In other words, don’t expect to become a back sleeper in one night.
To make the transition to back sleeping a little easier, here are a few useful tips and tricks to help train yourself to sleep on your back.
1. Start with a good foundation
First, you’ll want to invest in a good-quality mattress. Generally speaking, back sleepers need a soft yet firm mattress that provides an even sleep surface and doesn’t sag too much beneath their weight. If your mattress is sagging, then it’s probably time to replace it.
Can’t afford to replace your mattress right now? Try these helpful tips from the Sleep Foundation as a temporary fix:
- Use a mattress topper made with thick materials
- Rotate your mattress regularly (only if recommended by the manufacturer)
- See if you can get the bed repaired for free under warranty
2. Replace your pillows
Did you know that pillows come in different heights to suit your preferred sleeping position? For example, if you’re a stomach sleeper, you probably prefer to sleep with a low height (aka “loft”) pillow.
So, if you’re training yourself to be a back sleeper, your first order of business is to invest in a new pillow. The best pillows for back sleepers are usually high loft pillows with a memory foam design. These pillows are designed to support spinal alignment without forcing your neck upwards or allowing your head to sink too deep into the pillow.
Don’t toss your old pillows just yet! You might be able to use them to help train yourself to sleep on your back. Many people find that putting a pillow under their knees helps them maintain the curvature of their spine, allowing them to wake up with fewer aches and pains. If a regular pillow isn’t doing it for you, try a wedge pillow instead.
4. Sleep with a weighted blanket
If you're struggling to fall asleep in your new sleeping position or remain on your back all night, sleeping with a high-quality weighted blanket may be helpful. Weighted blankets are typically filled with plastic pellets or glass beads that give the blanket extra weight. This added weight applies soothing pressure to the body that many people find calming.
The benefits of weighted blankets extend beyond their stress-busting capabilities. Since the extra weight of the blanket applies gentle force to the body, it may help deter you from reverting back to your side or stomach sleeping position.
5. Surround yourself with pillows
Another way to make yourself more comfortable in the back sleeping position is to place pillows on either side of you, which help deter you from rolling onto your side or stomach. As an added bonus, you’ll feel as though you’re sleeping in a cloud.
6. Start napping on your back
If back sleeping isn’t your normal position, the idea of sleeping on your back for seven or more hours straight can be daunting. Why not start small by taking a power nap on your back instead? Begin training yourself to sleep on your back by taking a short nap two to three times a week. If you’re struggling to fall asleep quickly, try wearing a weighted eye mask to create pitch black and help trigger your relaxation response.
Don’t Force It
Back sleeping has its benefits, but that doesn’t mean it’s the right position for everyone. At the end of the day, getting high-quality sleep is what matters most. At Gravity Blankets, we’re here to help you do it in style.