How Sleeping Positions Affect Our Health
We all have our sleeping position. And we find a particular one very comfortable and pleasant that we tend to start sleeping in that position — all the time. Whether you like to lie on your stomach, sleep on your back, on your side, or splay your limbs around your bed like an abstract painting, we will just happily settle into that position and doze off. We don’t care if it looks awkward or uncomfortable for some. And as long as we are comfortable sleeping with it, we don’t care. Sleeping position is just a matter of preference.
We think that going to sleep with that position is okay all the time. But in reality, there is more to that than just plain comfortable. Our sleeping area has a massive effect on our body. I mean, think of it this way – we spend around a third of the day sleeping in general, right? (Around an average of 8 hours), if we look at it at a much grander scale, it only means that we are unconscious and motionless around a third of our entire life. Of course, that time you are asleep will consist of different sleeping postures. And these postures affect our sleep quality and eventually have an impact on our health. So, what are the common sleeping postures we usually do?
Common Sleeping Positions
There are a lot of common sleeping positions we usually do, and here are just a few of them:
- The Fetal Position – One of the most common views in which a person is sleeping on his or her side and curls up both knees towards the chest. Same as both arms as well, hence the name. People who easily get cold tends to do this kind of position to retain body heat. This posture is more prevalent in women than men, as studies shows.
- The Side Sleeper, aka The Log – some people tend to sleep on their side. A variation of this is that the arms on the lying side support the head and the legs are slightly to curl together. This sleeping position is familiar to people sleeping on inappropriate and uncomfortable places, like the bench or on the floor.
- Spread-eagle – well, in this posture, the sleeper just spread his or her limbs all around the place, like doing a snow angel on the bed. Pretty much a comfortable one, especially for people who have a large, flat space to sleep in.
- The Splat – It’s the spread-eagle, yet the sleeper sleeps on his or her stomach, looking like a cockroach being stepped on. This one so far is my favorite and go-to position, especially if I sleep on a soft, comfy bed.
- The Hugger – as the name suggests, the person sleeping, finds it comfortable to sleep while hugging his or her pillow or their partner close to their body.
Effects of Sleeping Positions
Yep, you read it right, just like in all things, there are always two sides to every coin. Your sleeping position may be bad for your health. And it will be hard for you to adapt to a new sleeping posture, especially when you are not aware of your position when you are asleep.
Anyway, let’s start first with:
- Sleeping On Your Side. The benefits of this posture include the proper position for your back and neck, which prevents any pains and aches. Because it keeps your spine aligned. This style also helps reduce acid reflux. The Downside of this position is that it produces wrinkles (especially on the face in contact with the pillow) and may contribute to breast sag to women.
- Sleeping On Your Back. The most common position and also is the healthiest posture as well. Sleeping on your back will keep your neck aligned with your spine, preventing neck and back pains. Wrinkles will not develop in this position for your back is the one in contact with your bed. The only downside of this posture is that you will be prone to snoring.
- Sleeping On Your Stomach. By far the worst choice among the tree common postures. The only benefit you will get is that it will surely prevent you from snoring. The rest, well, it’s pretty not so good, for it will make you prone to back and neck pains. This position too can provide wrinkles on your face, as well as your body. And of course, a no-no for pregnant women, because of, you know, obvious reasons.
We all have our favorite sleeping position, others, well, they will make do with whatever posture they are in as long as it is comfortable. We all know that whenever we sleep, we don’t have any control over our position, so the best way there is to start with your typical post before you sleep. In this way, you can make sure that you will retain the same position you slept in most of the time.