Ask A Chiropractor – Do chiropractic pillows work?

What are chiropractic pillows?

Chiropractic pillows, also known as cervical or ergonomic pillows, are often made of foam with a curvature to them that helps support a natural spinal position. The ends are thicker with a thinner middle. This design cradles the head in a way that prevents neck pain. 

Do ergonomic pillows work?

Cervical pillows are designed to take the pressure off of the spine by ensuring your head is the proper position. This correction allows for the spine to lay in a neutral position. Sleeping in a more neutral spine position helps prevent neck pain. By adjusting your posture while you sleep it promotes blood flow and prevents unwanted discomfort. These pillows work when the fit is right and they are used properly. It is important your head is not pushed forward while you sleep. 

Which pillow should I use?

Choosing an ergonomic pillow really depends on your build and how you sleep. Contour shaped pillows, the most commonly referred to chiropractic pillow, is designed for those sleeping on their backs or or the side. It’s important that the peak of the curvature pressed on your neck is not so thick that your head is pushed forward. You should be laying in a neutral position. 

For those with a smaller frame or who like to sleep on their stomach we would recommend a thinner, slim pillow. This allows the head to be brought up slightly while still supporting the spine.

For folks with sleep apnea or other medical conditions there are specific pillows on the market to help ease sleep. We suggest speaking with your chiropractor or doctor at your next visit to find out what is best for you. 

Be sure to check with your insurance company to see if an ergonomic pillow is covered. We also suggest reading reviews to help identify the right pillow for your size and build. Remember you can always schedule an appointment to find what works with your medical history.