There’s nothing quite like having a pillow that works for you. The way your pillow allows you to sleep and the way it supports your head makes one grab that pillow even for road trips. That’s why we call them “our pillow!” Even though this is your best friend at night, it can also be starting to cause those allergies and stiff necks you are now having.
Providing support for your neck and upper back is the most important role that the pillow needs to fill when you are asleep. We need this support when we are sleeping because the human spine is naturally curved. Having support for your head and neck helps to maintain the proper alignment of these areas of the spine. Sleeping without adequate support will not only have a negative impact on your sleep, but it can also result in stiffness in your neck and back.
Here are a few reasons why you need to change your pillow frequently:
- Over a long period of use, your pillows store dust mites and they are not just the ones that roam freely in the air. Dandruff, hair fall, oil, dead skin, spit from your mouth (when you sleep face down) all leads to accumulation of critters that get locked inside the foam of the pillow.
- Sleeping on a pillow that houses thousands of mites and critters increases your risk of getting acne and allergies. Here are ways to prevent allergic cough and cold in winter.
- The chances of allergies increase in a person who is asthmatic or have other respiratory infections. In fact, people who suffer from perennial cold and cough along with nasal congestion should give a try by changing pillows to arrest allergy. Read to know if your child’s cough is a symptom of asthma.
- The good news is that these dust mites and critters usually don’t cause any harm other than giving rise to allergies. That still doesn’t mean that you could sleep hugging those dust mites in the night.
- Your pillow loses its volume with every passing day, which means that the pillow disrupts the gap between your head, neck and your shoulder. Too much or too less space between your head and neck could cause damage to your spine. It is important to maintain the gap to encourage natural alignment of the neck and the head.
Here are a few signs that say it’s time to change the pillow:
- Your pillow gets easily folded easily.
- While lying down on the pillow you feel the foam has disintegrated into lumps and isn’t uniform anymore.
- Your pillow has to be punched often to make it feel fluffy and increase its volume.
- Your pillow has thinned so much that it feels you are lying flat even when your head is placed on the pillow.
The National Sleep Foundation suggests a test that will prove if your pillow is shot: Fold it in half. Now let go. If it stays folded, it’s time to send your pillow packing.
It is recommended you change your pillow every 6 months and launder according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
Final thoughts: Not changing your pillow regularly can cause blemishes, night sweats, stress, allergies, muscle stiffness, and body aches.
Ref. clearwaterchiropractic,net, thehealthsite.com, menshealth.com
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