Why Your Pillow is So Important
When it comes to what you sleep on, we feel that so much attention is given to the mattress, while the pillow is often times overlooked. If you’re waking up with soreness in your neck, back, or even a headache, the first place to look should be where you literally lay your head at night. How long have you had the pillow? When was the last time you washed it? Is it too “puffy”, for lack of a better term, or is it not plush enough? These are important questions, because your pillow is vital to your overall sleep health.
Pillows have a fundamental job – to support your upper back and your neck while they rest in the relatively same position on a nightly basis. Without a pillow, well first you would sleep a lot less comfortably, but you would be putting your spine in an unnatural position, since it’s naturally curved, while mattresses are flat. An unnatural position for a long period of time can lead to a sore neck or back, which can really put a kink in your day, no pun intended.
A pillow does not last as long as a mattress, but there’s no definitive rule on when to replace one. To be safe, every two years is a rough estimate of how long to keep your “every night” pillow. Remember, just like a mattress and your sheets, they can collect dirt, dust, mites, and a host of other things that will make it less than squeaky clean. This is incredibly important because it’s the thing your face is closest to every night; whatever is on, near, or within your pillow, you’re breathing that in. Consider washing your pillow every six month (refer to the label for specific care instructions), while changing your pillowcase just as often as you do your bedsheets.
The right pillow is of course subjective, there are a few guidelines that might help, depending on how you sleep. If you sleep on your stomach, a thin pillow or in some cases, no pillow at all may be good for you; in this case, the front part of your body is in contact with the mattress, leaving your neck and back to rest in its natural position. If you sleep on your side, you’ll want one that keeps your neck straight to follow the curvature of your back rather than dipping down or being raised up. Back sleepers just need enough “loft” or height that their head is supported. We understand how important a pillow is to your sleep, so we’ve developed an entire collection, some specifically designed for back, stomach, and side sleepers. You can browse our selection online or in-store at Macy’s, or by simply clicking here.