Wake Up Energized!
Any West Vancouver Chiropractor will tell you a good night’s sleep is a key component of optimal health. Unfortunately, back pain, neck pain, and other musculoskeletal issues can stop us from getting the rest we need. While some cases need physiotherapy or chiropractic to recover, sometimes selected the right mattress and pillow is enough to ease the pain and usher in a restorative sleep. All physical therapists, RMT’s, physiotherapists, chiropractors and kinesiologists get asked on a regular basis which pillow or bed is the best and there is no universal answer. It’s about finding the right fit for your needs and here’s how!
- Firstly, find out if your mattress or pillow is the problem. Mattresses and fancy orthopedic pillows can be expensive. Don’t blow through a month’s pay on a bed before finding out exactly what is causing your lower back pain or sleep problems. A detailed assessment and diagnosis by a qualified health professional(physiotherapist, chiropractor, massage therapist, kinesiologist etc.) can steer you in the right direction and get you one step closer to a pain-free life. Mattress lifespan is another factor to consider. More than 10 years old? Time for a new one!
- Test, test, and test again. Mattresses come in all shapes and sizes these days. Different materials, firmness and density levels and even temperature controls can all affect how well suited a mattress is for you. Not enough support from a soft mattress can strain your spinal ligaments and cause lower back pain. Too firm a mattress can cause shoulder impingement and rotator cuff injuries in side sleepers.
- Ignore the price tag before testing. Avoid a subconscious bias by not looking at the price before testing out a pillow or mattress. We tend to assume a more expensive mattress or pillow with automatically be better for us and this couldn’t be further from the truth. The best pillow or mattress for you might be the bottom of the barrel no-name brand so be open minded!
Waking up with headaches? Your pillow might be too thick or too thin. When finding the right fit for you its key to try out as many different options as possible for as long as possible. Laying on a pillow or mattress for two seconds doesn’t give you a fair gauge on its quality. Spend at least 5 minutes with each option to get a feel for how your body reacts to it. Do you feel evenly supported? Is it easy to rise from? Can you change positions comfortably?
- Work with a professional. It has become commonplace these days to do all our shopping online. But, when it comes to selecting your mattress, make the effort to visit a mattress store to test the different options and talk with the salespeople. They know their products inside and out and can help steer you towards the right fit. Taking photos of your position in different options and bringing them to your chiropractor can also be helpful to make sure your spine is in a natural neutral position.
- Get a good return or exchange policy. As much effort as you may put into choosing the right pillow and mattress combo, sometimes it can take weeks to realize a mattress isn’t for you. Most mattress retail stores offer excellent return or exchange policies so ensure you’re protected long term before you buy!
- Pillow talk. Mattresses can be more trial an error sometimes but the perfect pillow can be easier to pin down. Test the pillow in numerous positions but especially the position you find yourself waking up in most often. As much as you may think you’re a side sleeping because you fall asleep in that position, the position you wake up is a more accurate reflection of what position you’re spending the majority of your sleep in. Make sure your head, neck, shoulders, and spine are all in a neutral position and evenly supported. Any tip or awkward angle can cause headaches, neck pain, shoulder pain and even jaw pain.
Choosing a mattress and pillow can make a world of difference but can also be a daunting task. Luckily, with Impulse Sport Therapeutics at your back, you don’t have to do it alone. There are many options for buying mattresses and pillows in West Vancouver and our chiropractors, physiotherapists, and massage therapists can help you navigate the options safely and efficiently!