From Reader's Digest comes a "prescription" of sleep positions that may help alleviate common health problems.
For TMJ or other types of jaw pain, it's recommended to keep your cheeks off the pillow by sleeping face up. Sleeping on the side of the face can put pressure on joints or the jaw itself and make the pain worse.
If snoring is a problem, sleeping on your side can help. Sleeping on your back pushes drainage back into the airways, causing problems with airflow. Elevating your head with a stack of pillows defeats gravity and helps drainage go down more easily.
For heartburn sufferers, studies have shown that sleeping on the left side helps reduce the burning. And, put gravity to use. Keeping your upper body elevated helps the acid go back down more quickly. For best results, don't just stack pillows, which can affect your abs and put pressure on your stomach. Instead, use a pillow that tapers down from about eight to ten inches.
Worried about wrinkles? Always sleeping on one side of the face can put pressure on that side, creating wrinkles. “Often I can tell what side a person sleeps on,” says Zakia Rahman, MD, FAAD, clinical associate professor of dermatology at Stanford University. “I can tell they must be a right- or left-side sleeper because one side of the face tends to age faster than the other.” Sleeping on your back will keep your face from rubbing against the pillow, but if you can’t fall asleep that way, try alternating the side on which side you lie.
For more information, contact us at Wilmette Dental. We can provide expert advice on many of these problems -- and can even suggest some innovative ways of dealing with wrinkles around the mouth. Happy sleeping.