While many people probably already know how important getting a good nights sleep is, a bit less known fact is that there are a lot of different types of sleepers. While we all probably agree that our days are always better when we have had a good nights sleep the previous day, not many really know the difference between being a night owl vs. an early bird -- and how your sleeping habits may differ depending on which kind of sleeper you are. Knowing which kind of sleeper you are can help you identify when is best to sleep, when is best for you to wake up, and even when is the most productive time of the day for you.
Side sleepers lie on the left or right side of the bed - the hips and shoulders provide support. There are many variations of this position, with arms and legs in different positions, but it's one of the favorite sleep patterns, especially for women.
Pros and cons of side sleepers – Side sleepers snored less, but they often complained of joint pain. No matter how the arms and legs are positioned, the hips and shoulders bear the brunt of supporting the body.
If the mattress is too firm, it can lead to painful pressure points in the joints, which can lead to tossing and turning. But if it's too soft, it can sag the spine and cause back or neck pain in the morning.
Side sleepers need two things in a mattress: support and comfort. They keep the spine ergonomically aligned while conforming to the joints and relieving pressure. The whole body feels better in the cradle of gentle comfort.
The stomach-lying person lies on the chest and abdomen with the arms on the sides or above the head. Some people wear one or both arms between the mattress and the pillow.
Pros and cons of Stomach Sleepers – The benefit is reduced snoring. Sleeping in this position can cause neck and back pain because the head, neck, and spine are difficult to maintain in a neutral position. Muscles and joints also experience additional stress when you sleep on your stomach. This can cause pain, nerve irritation, tingling, and numbness.
People who sleep on their stomachs will benefit from trying new sleeping positions, but for those who can't sleep, it can be helpful to try sleeping with your forehead propped on a pillow rather than turning your head to the side to make more room to breathe.
Stomach sleepers need the support of a firm mattress. Because most of the body's weight is on the torso, a support bed helps the spine maintain its natural curve and reduces physical stress on the muscles.
Lie on your back with your arms facing up.
Pros and cons of Back Sleepers– It relieves muscle tension by keeping the neck and spine in perfect position. Because it works with gravity, beauty experts say it prevents wrinkles on the neck and face.
The only exception is if you snore, sleeping on your back can make it worse by loosening the soft tissue in the back of your throat and blocking your airway. A high pillow can help, but is rarely the only solution.
The best mattresses for back sleepers are medium to medium firm. They should be supportive enough to keep the body in an anatomically neutral position, yet flexible enough to relieve pressure on the shoulder blades, coccyx and heels.
All In All!
Sleep is an important behavior that has a major impact on our overall physical health. Given that we spend 1/3 of our time in bed, it's important to make sure we get this part of life right and give ourselves the best possible support.
If you want to learn more about the best mattress for your unique sleeping preferences, we invite you to check out our mattress buying guide to learn more.