When it comes to pillows, opinions vary widely. Some people like to pile their beds high with throw pillows and pillow shams and sleep with two or three pillows under their necks. On the other hand, some people believe you’re better off sleeping with no pillow at all. Who is correct, according to the experts?

  • No pillow is no good. Ok, so that may be overstating the case, and ultimately, whether or not you sleep with a pillow is personal preference. However, most experts agree that a pillow helps keep the spine in proper alignment while you sleep, for most sleep positions. The only exception to the rule is stomach sleeping: stomach sleepers are better off with a very thin pillow or no pillow at all.
  • The ideal number of pillows is one. The right pillow is not too high, nor too low, and keep your head and spine in alignment. Side sleepers need a thick pillow to keep the neck and spine aligned, by fitting in from the neck to the end of the shoulder. Back sleepers need a thinner pillow, just to keep the neck aligned with the spine. Pillows too high for a stomach sleeper will force the neck up and back, making sleeping uncomfortable. A thin pillow or no pillow are the suggested options for stomach sleepers, to help them keep their spines straight. Another option is a pillow with a divot, like the face rest on a massage table.
  • If you need a high loft pillow, don’t stack flat pillows. You may think that two or three flat pillows are the same as one thick pillow, but they don’t function the same way. Stacked pillows can slide around during the night, and that can throw off the spine’s alignment.
  • You might want additional pillows, but not under your head. Side sleepers might be more comfortable with a pillow between their knees, to keep the pelvis straight during sleep. Alternately, they can put a body pillow between the legs and wrap their arms around it. A thin pillow beneath the knees can relieve a back sleeper’s lower back pain, while people with chronic back pain might benefit from thin pillows under their ribs and knees. A pregnant woman should sleep on her side, with a supportive body pillow to keep her there, and additional pillows behind the back, beneath the knees, and below the stomach for extra support.

Whether you’re shopping for pillows or mattresses, you owe it to yourself to check out Mancini's Sleepworld. Since 1969, the Mancini family has owned and operated their store in Sunnyvale, CA, selling brand name mattresses at fair prices and treating every customer with respect. Beginning an expansion in 1989, the Mancinis now have 33 locations across the greater bay area, allowing for same-day mattress delivery in most cases. To learn more about Mancini's Sleepworld,  contact us through our website or call 800-647-5337.