There are many sleep positions to choose from when you crawl into bed each night. These can be narrowed down into four main categories: side, stomach, fetal, and back. Each position has its benefits, though some have more benefits than others.
The back sleeping position is considered the best for the body, although many would agree that it is not the most comfortable of the positions. The only downside to this position is that if you snore, this may not be the position for you, as it can aggravate the condition. However, sleeping on your back is the best way to keep your spine in a neutral position, aligning your body and keeping it pain free. It is also good for preventing acid reflux in people who suffer from it. And a bonus for women is that it is the best for preventing wrinkles - as nothing pushes against your face while you sleep.
The side sleeping position is the next best sleeping position for your body. It is great for preventing neck and back pain and reducing snoring. Also, if you suffer from acid reflux, this is the next best to the back sleeping position. Though bad news, ladies, it can be bad for wrinkles pressing of the pillow against the face and create a bit of breast sag due to the lack of support.
Another bonus to the side sleeping position is that for the pregnant woman, it is typically the most comfortable. If a pregnant woman lies on her left side she will optimize blood flow, helping to keep herself and her baby the healthiest.
While it isn't the ideal sleep position, there are many that go to the fetal sleeping position as their preferred position. What may seem comfortable when you first lie down is not optimal for your body as the night wears on. You will likely wake up with neck and back pain from the contorting of your body during rest. Yet again, ladies, this one is bad for breast sag and wrinkles too.
Lastly, the stomach sleeping position is the least healthiest position, as it compounds all of the problems noted in the fetal position. While it may ease a snoring problem, it is terrible for those with acid reflux. It does create terrible neck and back pain and can make it very difficult to get out of bed when you wake in the morning. If you don't normally suffer from any back and / or neck pain but do tend to snore, you may still want to consider the stomach sleeping position for its benefits in this area.
Something to consider when you find your optimal sleep position is your pillow choice. For fetal and side sleepers, a plump, firm pillow is great for keeping the support under your head and neck. A stomach sleeper may not need one at all, but if they do, a thin, soft one is preferred. For those who choose to sleep on their back, pick a fluffy, soft pillow to provide support without propping your head and neck at an awkward angle.
The way one sleeps is very personal, and you must search for a sleep position that is comfortable and optimal for your health. And don't underestimate the sleeping power of the right pillow.