Neck Arthritis Pillows And Sleep
Sleep disorders in people with neck arthritis are common. In fact, sleep disturbance affects up to 10.2 million U.S. adults with arthritis, according to a 2011 study by the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. The study estimated that people with arthritis are almost three times as likely to have insomnia as their healthy counterparts.*
I spoke with two New York City physical therapists to find useful tips on sleeping with neck arthritis and was pleasantly surprised to find that at least one of these tips may even save you money.
Coisum Cervical Orthopedic Contour Pillow
Why You Should Buy
It has the answer for soothing away any pain or stiffness on your neck and shoulders, as well as alleviating tingling or even numbness.
This pillow is made of 60 high-density of pretty firm slow-rebound memory foam to maintain it reasonably hard to support your head and quickly take your body curve.
This pillow is also featured with two sides in different lofts and horn shapes. The higher-end is designed for head and neck support during back sleeping or resting, and the lower end provides you with a cutout for a top armrest for side sleepers.
Therefore, when pressure is applied, it will mold to your head and neck shapes. As a result, for back sleepers, their head wont tilt backwards or forwards during the sleep. Meanwhile, for side sleepers, their shoulders wont feel pressed all night long.
A CertiPUR-US certified and chemical-free memory foam with skin-friendly of bamboo fabric pillowcase offers air circulation. Also, a mite-resistant inner cover is a good choice for those suffering from an allergy.
Specially designed for side and back sleeping postures, you can find these Coisum Cervical Orthopedic Contour Pillows in varied options of firmness levels: the firmest back and side sleeping pillow, medium-firm back and side sleeping pillow, medium-firm back sleeping pillow, the softest stomach and back sleeping pillow, and more.
- Only one size fits all
Best Pillow For Back Sleepers With Neck Pain
Neck pain sufferers who sleep on their back will appreciate the balance of softness and support afforded by the adjustable Brooklinen Marlow Pillow.
- Best for: Back and side sleepers
- Available sizes: Standard and king
- Fill: Memory foam and polyester fiber
- Firmness : 5
- Hypoallergenic: Yes
Pros: Comfortable for back and side sleepers, adjustable firmness/loft
Cons: Not ideal for stomach sleepers, not machine washable
When the Insider Reviews team is chatting about our favorite bedding, Brooklinen always comes up. The brand makes the top picks in our weighted blanket and down pillow guides. The shredded memory foam/polyester blend is another impressive product from Brooklinen.
I slept incredibly well on the pillow. It cradled my head, keeping it aligned with my spine, whether I was on my back or side. During the 10 nights I slept on it, I didn’t experience neck pain.
Though you can’t add or remove fill, it features a zipper system for making it more or less firm. If you want a softer feel with a higher loft, you simply unzip the zippers along the lengths of the pillow. Zip it up for a firm feel.
Unzipping the pillow reveals a mesh gusset that lends a level of breathability to the Marlow. I preferred the softer, cooler feel and added loft of the unzipped pillow.
The Marlow comes with the longest risk-free trial of any pillows we tested.
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Putnams Cervical Neck Pillow
While some people sleep exclusively on their side or back, many of us can switch between a combination of the two, making choosing the perfect pillow a little tricky. The Putnams Cervical Neck Pillow is designed with features for both side and back sleepers, featuring contours to fill the mattress-to-ear gap as well as rounded soft contours to accommodate back sleepers. It includes unique features to provide extra ventilation during the night, as well as an intelligently-designed ear recess to reduce pressure on the ears for side sleepers. If you suffer from arthritis and tend to toss and turn at night, this arthritis pillow is a perfect option.
Shoulder Pain And Sleep
According to Ruben Gobezie, M.D., founding director and chief of surgery at the Cleveland Shoulder Institute, discomfort in bed and sleep problems are common issues for people with shoulder pain. Patients frequently feel discomfort regardless of which sleep position they employ. Some also feel numbness, tingling, and muscle spasms.
While any of the conditions listed above could contribute to shoulder pain-related sleep problems, Dr. Gobezie notes three specific conditions are the most common culprits:
- Bursitis, an inflammation of the bursa sacs that cushion bones around joints in the body. Inflamed bursa produce more liquid which can lead to painful swelling.
- Biceps tendinopathy, a condition that occurs due to prolonged deterioration of the biceps tendon that connects shoulder bones and muscles. Tendinopathy is characterized by sharp pains around the tendon.
- Tears and other injuries to the rotator cuff, a grouping of muscles that cushions and stabilizes the shoulder joint.
Before seeing medical attention for any of these conditions, Dr. Gobezie recommends taking anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen. You can also try sleeping in a recliner, applying ice or heat to the pain-affected areas, or wearing a compression sleeve.
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The Best Pillows For Neck Pain As Reviewed By Our Experts
Reasons to buy
Reasons to avoid
This Kally Sleep Cervical Neck Pain memory foam pillow features a butterfly shape with a divot in the middle that gently cradles the head, while simultaneously offering cervical support. Filled with soft memory foam, the slow-rebound inner is medium-firm in density, coming in at a seven for firmness on a scale of 1-10.
The breathable, 100% cotton outer will also help those who tend to suffer from overheating at night or who often find themselves waking up feeling hot and wondering how to get back to sleep in the middle of the night. Its slightly smaller than a standard pillow though, so its wise to invest in bespoke covers as extras, which can be bought online. Kallysleep also offers a 14-night trial so you can test it out for a couple of weeks to ensure its the right fit for you. One of our best pillows for neck pain overall, offering good value-for-money, a good trial period, and great support.
Reasons to buy
Reasons to avoid
While front sleeping is not really recommended and it can cause neck issues for some, if youre unable to sleep any other way, then this strangely shaped offering the MARNUR Contour Memory Foam Pillow Orthopedicmight help.
Reasons to avoid
Reasons to avoid
Reasons to avoid
Made with the same space-age material that fills its mattresses, the Tempur Original Support pillow has been specifically designed to cradle the neck and shoulders to provide pain-free slumber.
Reasons to buy
Best Overall Pillow For Neck Pain
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Best For Natural Fill Material: Hullo Buckwheat Pillow
Buckwheat pillows are a suitable option for people who want a product made with natural materials.
These pillows contain thousands of buckwheat hulls instead of foam or fibers. The company describes buckwheat hulls as firm but malleable and breathable.
According to Hullo, the cotton case is certified organic. However, the company does not state which certification this product holds.
People can adjust this buckwheat pillow to suit their sleeping style and comfort preferences by adding or removing hulls from the pillow.
This may suit people who believe their needs will change over time or who want to be able to adapt their pillow if the severity of their neck pain changes.
Pros and cons of the Hullo Buckwheat Pillow may include:
Sleeping Style And Body Weight
Sleep experiences with pillows depend greatly on sleeping style, body weight, and mattress firmness. Well break down how the original Saatva Pillow performs for sleepers of different styles and weights.
For a comfortable night of sleep, side sleepers require a pillow with a loft that fits the space between the shoulder and head. The pillow should not be too thin, or the sleepers head will angle down too far. The loft of the Saatva Pillow is adjustable, so sleepers can customize their experience by removing the inner pillow.
Side sleepers who weigh less than 130 pounds will likely have the best experience and feel properly supported in the head and neck. Side sleepers between 130 and 230 pounds will also receive adequate support from the pillow. However, because the Saatva Pillow is medium soft and conforms to the shape of the head, sleepers over 230 pounds may find themselves sinking into the pillow too deeply, which can cause the head to angle down too far. These side sleepers may prefer a firmer pillow that also provides the higher loft necessary for support.
Back sleepers over 230 pounds may find the Saatva Pillow less comfortable. They may sink too deeply into the pillow and therefore not experience proper support for the head and neck. This could make it difficult for these sleepers to keep the neck and spine aligned properly.
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Do You Suffer From Neck Pain While You Are Sleeping
This can be the most frustrating. Typically, moderate or more severe levels of neck pain can prevent you from falling asleep, wake you when you are changing positions, or may be present with a headache when you wake up in the morning. Fortunately, there are many pillows that can help. If you have injured your neck, often you will have a stiffness. In order to ease the muscles, a pillow that is soft will be one that accommodates your neck and surrounds it in comfort.
A soft memory foam pillow can be very comforting and, since it is a special memory foam, will help keep your neck from being chilled on cold nights, and remain breathable and cool on warm nights. It is one of the most popular pillows for neck pain. Another way to get comforting support is the inflatable pillow, which will react to changing positions and can be adjusted for height, firmness and shape. It reacts like a water pillow, but when you are in pain, you do not want to mess with heavy water bags. The inflatable pillow is light and easy to fill.
However, if you are a particularly deep sleeper or are taking medication for pain and sleeping, you could do more harm by sleeping on your side in the middle section, meant for back sleeping. If you can manage to change positions consciously or wake up from pain when changing positions, this is another popular choice. A good solution is the neck pain pillow, which is fully adjustable, while still providing the separate section benefits.
Neck Pain And Its Relation To Sleep Quality
Neck pain can involve discomfort in the muscles, bones, nerves, joints, and the discs between the bones. It can cause difficulty in movement.
Sometimes, a chronic health condition, such as fibromyalgia, causes neck pain. In other cases, it can occur as a result of an accident.
While periodic discomfort in your neck isnt typically something to worry about, its important to seek medical care if your symptoms dont go away within a week or escalate to other areas of your body.
Its difficult to sleep when youre experiencing any kind of pain, including chronic neck pain. You might toss and turn all night to find a comfortable sleeping position.
Researchers in a that evaluated teens found that neck pain was linked to poor sleep quality in this age group.
for the neck and upper quadrant.
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Best Pillow For Side Sleepers With Neck Pain
Pros: Comfortable for all sleep positions, especially side sleeping precise adjustability machine-washable cover
Cons: Relatively short trial period, removing fill can get messy
Only two pillows we tested were deemed comfortable by multiple neck pain sufferers in our tests: our top pick and the Eli & Elm Cotton Side Sleeper Pillow. The Eli & Elm pillow is unique because its U shape helps keep your shoulder and neck in a supported position. It’s filled with polyester and latex that you can remove to get a custom loft and feel. We recommend only removing a little at a time to avoid making a mess.
The Eli & Elm pillow fits into a standard pillowcase despite the shape. If you’re interested in a more precise fit, you can purchase the pillow with a case. I tried the pillow with the Eli & Elm pillowcase and a standard pillowcase and didn’t notice a difference in comfort.
My first night on the Eli & Elm Cotton Side Sleeper, I slept better than I’d slept in months. I found the loft was just right for my side sleeping, so I didn’t remove any. While testing the pillow, I didn’t experience any neck pain.
After a week, my wife took the Eli & Elm pillow and refused to give it back. She mainly sleeps on her back with a bit of side sleeping. The U shape kept her from unconsciously shifting to a position that didn’t keep her spine aligned.
Do You Suffer Neck Tension Headaches
The structures of the neck are sensitive and can refer pain to the head. Typically, poor posture when sleeping can result in a morning headache, especially using more than one pillow and having the head pushed forward. Most pillows designed for the cervical spine will help to keep the head and neck in a good posture, thereby helping to prevent these headaches. A pillow for headache relief uses an ice pack in a design that wraps around the neck and back of head to help with relief of a current headache or to apply cold therapy to injured muscles.
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Best Down Alternative: Coop Home Goods Eden Pillow
This pillows fill is a mix of gel-infused memory foam and microfiber. The company writes that it is a supportive alternative to down fill and may be suitable for people who are allergic to down or lead a vegan lifestyle.
A purchase comes with extra filling so a person can add or remove as much as they like to create a height that suits their needs.
Additionally, the pillow features a 100% polyester lining and a breathable pillowcase made from a blend of polyester and bamboo-derived viscose rayon.
Its memory foam holds CertiPUR-US and Greenguard Gold certifications.
According to the company, this pillow is hypoallergenic and the cover is washable.
The pros and cons a person can consider include:
Buying Guide For Best Cervical Pillows
The wrong pillow can be a real pain in the neck, and even more so if you suffer from health issues like arthritis or cervical degenerative disk disease. But even without an underlying condition, poor sleeping posture can lead to neck strain, aching muscles, and pounding headaches definitely not the best start to anyoneâs day.
Cervical pillows are specially designed to keep your cervical spine in proper alignment while you sleep, so you wake up feeling rested, refreshed, and pain-free. If youâre ready to ditch your dumpy old pillow in favour of something more supportive, a cervical pillow is a sound choice. But with hundreds of options on the market, finding the perfect shape, size, and texture can be a challenge.
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The Best Pillows To Help With Neck Pain
Below are some of the best pillows for neck pain that a person can consider.
Please note that the writer of this article has not tried these products. All information presented is purely research-based and correct at the time of publication.
Medical News Today follows a strict product selection and vetting process. Learn more here.
The EPABO Memory Orthopedic Pillow features an ergonomic contour that may suit back and side sleepers. The contoured design cradles the head, helping keep the spine aligned and relaxed.
The manufacturer writes that this pillow uses breathable memory foam to keep people cool while they sleep.
A person can also adjust the pillow to suit them. It features a removable piece of foam at the back, which can lower the resting position of the head for people who find the pillow too high.
The company describes this pillow as firm. The pillow has a rayon-polyester case and a memory foam fill.
The pros and cons a person can consider include:
Tempur Original Large Pillow: Best Memory Foam Pillow For Neck Pain
Price: £105 | Buy now from Tempur
Contoured memory foam is the pillow type of choice for people seeking relief from neck pain, and Tempur is the king of memory foam pillows. This classic robust pillow is pricey, but it’s a superb investment if you want to sleep better and wake in comfort.
The raised section supports your neck and helps your head, neck and shoulder muscles to fully relax in their natural posture while you sleep. The Large size is 11.5cm at its highest, which is not actually that high, so while it’s perfect for back sleepers you may need a bit of extra height to accommodate your shoulder if you’re a side sleeper. Luckily the Tempur Original also comes in X Large with 13cm of support, which is ideal for side sleepers. However it’s also worth noting that the pillow will compress and firm up over your first few nights of sleep.
Key specs Filling: Memory foam Cover: 100% cotton cover Sizes: Large is 61cm x 31cm also available in Medium and X Large
Price: £39 |
Memory foam is great for providing neck support, but it can feel rather clammy in warm weather. So pillow specialist BedStory has found a solution: infuse memory foam with cooling gel to regulate temperature, disperse heat and allow the air to move around. The result is a wonderfully supportive pillow that responds to your body’s temperature to help you drift off and wake up in comfort.
Key specs Filling: Memory foam Cover: Microfibre and tencel Sizes: 1
Price: £65 | Buy now from Rested
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