A common question that none of us seem to know the answer to is, how many pillows should you sleep with? Generally, most of us tend to sleep with two pillows. We've done some research and as it happens, you should only be sleeping with one pillow. Under your head at least. The purpose of a pillow is to raise your head slightly so your neck and spine are aligned, keeping your airway open. There are exceptions to the one pillow rule depending on your sleeping position. Find out how you should really be using your pillows...
The right pillow
So now the bad news is out of the way, sleeping with one pillow doesn't have to be a bad thing. If you pick the right pillow, it will do you more good than stacking pillows up to the ceiling in search of comfort. Having multiple pillows raises your head far too high and misaligns your spine whilst providing little support for your neck. Pillows often get overlooked in the bedroom but they could be the reason for poor sleep. How many pillows you should sleep with comes down to what position you like to sleep in. So, what is the right pillow for you?
If you're a side sleeper, you do get to use two pillows but they're not both for your head! The best way to align your spine is to have one pillow under your head and one between your knees. In the side sleeping position, the leg you place on top can pull on your spine leading to stress on your lower back and hips. Try to use a firm pillow between your knees to keep the knees from touching. As for your head, a medium firm pillow is perfect. These two pillows combined will keep your spine & neck perfectly aligned.
As a back sleeper, you're already treating your spine a lot better than most. It is technically the ideal way to sleep for your spines health. So long as you use the right pillows, that is. To really take the stress off at the end of the day, try sleeping with a soft pillow under your knees as well as your head. Having the two pillows positioned this way keeps your spine in its natural curvature. Raising your knees slightly when sleeping on your back is also proven to help people fall asleep quicker!
Sleeping on your stomach is dubbed the worst position for sleeping. This is because laying flat on your stomach puts high stress on the back of the spine, pulling it out of position. If you can, try to avoid sleeping this way where possible. If it's the only way you can get those zzz's, place a medium pillow under your pelvis area. This keeps your spine in the best alignment it can be in this position. Ideally, try not to have a pillow under your head but if you need one, make sure it's a soft pillow. Keeping your head as low as possible will help to align your spine correctly.