No more counting sheep

No more counting sheep

Want Quality Sleep?

Stress

At Healthy Harmony Tenerife we know that overwhelming feeling that often lingers for way too long. As our list of things to do grows longer, our worries multiply before our eyes, causing our anxiety levels to rise, which leads to us just wanting to hide under the covers forever. This is obviously not possible since we lead busy, fulfilling lives. We don’t have time to let stress get us down! So, what do we do about it? Well, besides meditation, exercise, eating healthy, and binge-watching your favourite Netflix show (which brings some people joy), there is something else that can really make all the difference—quality sleep.

When you neglect your need for rest, your body begins to shut down in protest, causing you to be groggy, cranky and well, stressed! Not only do you need to set enough time aside to get your full 7-8 hours of sleep, but you need to think about how you’re sleeping.

The best sleeping position

Lying flat on your back is said to be the most ideal sleeping. However, there are many people who find that however hard they try, they just cannot get comfortable and fall asleep while on their backs. Using a body pillow for support is said to be good for people like these. Body pillows even provide a sense of security on a mental level, helping you relax and fall asleep. Haven’t you ever found yourself unconsciously gathering up your blanket and hugging it, helping you drift off on otherwise restless nights.

Hugs

Once we become adults, we are burdened by more and more physical fatigue and emotional stress, and when we find it hard to sleep it’s common to wake up in the morning feeling unrefreshed after a night of falling in and out fitful slumber. Hugging something or being hugged helps us feel a sense of security, and both give us a feeling of peace.

Using a body pillow helps you relax and gain a sense of security. Before we are born, we live inside our mothers’ wombs — imagine the posture of an unborn child in that position. It looks like the child is hugging something, doesn’t it? Body pillows help you naturally maintain the foetal position, subconsciously helping you gain the feeling of protection and security of a child in its mother’s womb to fall into a sound and relaxed sleep. ‘I want to be soothed and fall asleep.’ Body pillows have been created by turning that notion into a reality.

Do you have Pain whilst in bed or when you get up?

At least once a week at Healthy Harmony Tenerife a client will arrive having woken with pain in their neck, shoulder, back, hips or knees and state all they have done is been to bed! We know from experience that  Body pillows help maintain the ideal alignment of your spine and lower back. Using a body pillow is one way to maintain a stable sleeping posture, but it’s also important not to place additional pressure and strain on your arms, shoulders, lower back, and knees. Using a therapeutic body pillow helps you maintain a stable sleeping position, mitigate the strain on your body as you sleep, and get a better quality of sleep.

Lay on your side and grab your body pillow. Focus on relaxing your muscles and how your body feels in that moment. By using a body pillow, your spine stays in proper alignment, helping you avoid aches and pains throughout the night and in the morning. The body pillow will also stop you from tossing and turning, which is usually caused by uncomfortable sleeping positions.

Do not have a body pillow?

Pillow One – Under your head – This is the pillow we are familiar with. It goes under your head at night, but your head is not the only part of your body that this pillow supports. Your neck and shoulders are equally important. Waking up with neck pain and a shoulder that feels scrunched is a sure sign your pillow is not providing the support you need.

Take a glance at your shoulder. Your pillow needs to fill in the space between that shoulder, to the curve of your neck and all the way to the top of your head. That’s a lot of space to fill! So, you need a pillow that will fill all that space and will mould to shape your curves. Your curves are awesome, and your pillow should be flexible to fit them.

Pillow Two – the teddy bear – Once your lower shoulder is supported, your upper shoulder and arm might feel a little left out. With no support, you may feel pain in your upper shoulder and back. Hugging a pillow between your arms will elevate your upper elbow and reduce stress on your shoulder. This can be any kind of pillow – a regular bed pillow, a bolster shaped pillow, even a large teddy bear would work.

Pillow Three – between the legs – supporting your upper leg and reducing strain on your hips and lower back, this one should be a wide, soft pillow. By making simple changes in your sleeping position, you can take strain off your back. Also, if  you have spinal stenosis (pinched nerves in the lower back), bending your knees may also help ease discomfort.

Pillows are a simple, affordable solution that can bring you some relief.

  • Lying on your side in a foetal position with a pillow between the knees helps keep the spine neutral.  Using a firm pillow can prevent the upper leg from pulling the spine out of alignment.
  • Situating a pillow between your lower half helps keep the knees aligned on top of one another, which in turn keeps your hip and pelvic area aligned. It can also reduce stress on the hips.
  • Using a longer pillow that encompasses both the upper and lower leg should benefit both the spine and hips

This may seem like a lot of pillows for one person. You may be wondering – how is there space on the bed for you to fit? And what if you sleep with a partner?

Once you’ve arranged yourself, and your pillows, for sleeping you don’t really take up more any more space. Switching position in the night requires a bit more work and coordination. However, people usually change position while sleeping because they are uncomfortable. So, if you’re better supported while sleeping, you may not need to change position at all!

Other Sleeping positions

If you cannot sleep on your side, as outlined above, below are more uses for pillows to offer you support and reduce pain.

Sleeping on your back

If you sleep on your back, place a pillow under your knees to help maintain the normal curve of your lower back. You might try a small, rolled towel under the small of your back for additional support. Support your neck with a pillow.

Sleeping on your stomach

Sleeping on your stomach can be hard on your back. If you can’t sleep any other way, reduce the strain on your back by placing a pillow under your pelvis and lower abdomen. Use a pillow under your head if it doesn’t place too much strain on your back. If it does cause strain, try sleeping without a pillow under your head.

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