If you’re like most people, you typically sleep on your side. Side sleeping can reduce snoring, alleviate symptoms of sleep apnea, sooth acid reflux and even help your major organs get a little R&R. But as you probably already know, it can also contribute to neck, shoulder and back pain or just a plain old tired feeling when you wake up.
So is side sleeping keeping you healthier or making you tired and stiff? If you’re having trouble, the solution usually comes down to selecting the right mattress design. A mattress that combines exceptional pressure relief at the surface and responsive support deep down.
The physics of sleep are pretty simple. When you sleep on your side, more weight and pressure is on your shoulder and hip. If a mattress is too firm and unresponsive, it can lead to a numb shoulder and arm from lack of circulation and stiffness or even pain caused by poor spinal alignment. That excess pressure and uneven support can also result in a lot of tossing and turning that disrupts the most restorative phases of sleep. And because you’re asleep when all that tossing is going on, you might not even know why you waking up feeling less than ideal. If your mattress does not have proper support system designed for your primary sleeping position, you are likely to experience disrupted sleep from excessive movement and even aches and back pain when you awaken. Mattresses structural designs without the proper support for sleeping position will cause muscles to be stressed, not relaxed and your spine to be misaligned while you sleep. If so, it’s likely you’re sleeping on a mattress that doesn’t allow your back’s muscles to relax as they ought to. As a consequence, you always end up sleeping with your muscles tensed, and the spine twisted in an unnatural position.
A key structural design consideration for side sleepers is one that offers support for curve and alignment to your spine as well as lets your shoulders and hips sink slightly into the bed.
Mattresses with individually wrapped pocket coils have a mattress support structural design that achieves the critical role of achieving spinal alignment for side sleepers. Pocket coils mattress support systems are made with hundreds of individual pocket springs. An average open coil bed contains 400 to 500 coils. A high quality queen size pocket coil mattress will usually contain more than 900 coils. Experts say, the more coils, the more comfortable the bed becomes.
People who sleep on their sides tend to move more than those who sleep on their back or stomach. For side sleepers the mattress needs to not only properly support them but also instantly adjust and respond to the movement without causing them to awaken. Mattresses with comfort layers made of latex foam have a combination of comfort and instantly responsive support. Latex is an open cell foam rubber, is very responsive and easily molds a sleeper’s body. It regains its original shape immediately whenever a sleeper changes his position in bed. Latex molds and forms to the body shape which keeps the critical. Latex comes in a range of firmness comfort choices. A latex/pocket coil mattress design with choices of firmness can allow for personal comfort choice, enhancing relaxation, allowing muscles to relax, critical to not only drifting off to sleep but also allowing your muscles to recharge (muscles can only recharge when they are relaxed). Memory foam with pocket coils is also a good combination. However, memory foam is a slow recovery (response) foam and can be problematic for side sleepers who move.
...sleep happily ever after...