Sleeping is one of the best types of activity that not only helps us relax our body but also calms our mind. It helps us disconnect with our surroundings for a while and put ourselves in Zen, focus on nothing, think about nothing, and just let our bodywork do the minimum. Sleeping is like meditation. It helps us to rejuvenate ourselves, daily. Even a 20-minute nap is powerful and efficient enough to fuel our bodies to work for the next 6 hours.
Very often you might have come across people telling you about the different sleeping positions and what are the benefits of each. Our sleeping positions tell a lot about us and also are determined by our lifestyle. Changing one’s sleeping position isn’t the easiest thing on earth but with some practice and daily efforts, one can prepare themselves and become used to sleeping positions that are slightly healthier than the others.
Sleeping on the back is considered to be one of the most beneficial positions to practice. In this article, we shall be learning about some of the proven benefits of sleeping on the back.
- For the Infants:
Pediatrics always suggest parents make their babies sleep on the back and not on their stomachs. When Babies sleep on their stomach it increases the bacterial load inside the nose, the respiratory work of the lungs is increased for breathing, and the secretions on the airway increase. These factors impose a threat to the baby and make them more prone to sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
To prevent this, the babies should be made to sleep on their back and it should be made sure that while sleeping, the baby does not face difficulty in breathing.
- Reduced Back Pain:
When one sleeps on their back, their spine is more aligned compared to the other positions. This alignment of the spine reduces pressure on it and therefore drives away any kind of back pain that one may be suffering from. This also is a good position to rest your neck.
Most people sleep on their stomachs, turning their heads to one side. This might cause soreness in the neck region since it is like keeping your head turned to one side for hours. It must be made sure that while sleeping, the natural curve of the spine is maintained and no external pressure tries to disrupt its alignment.
- Better Breathing:
When one sleeps on their stomach, there is an increased load on the lungs and the breathing space is reduced. Even when one sleeps on their sides, it compresses their diaphragm, which leads to shallow breathing. The diaphragm has a primary role to play in breathing and hence any interference in its space can cause issues in breathing.
Shallow breathing not only causes uneasiness but also drives away the benefits associated with deep diaphragmatic breathing. Deep breathing is believed to reduce stress and improve one’s mood. It also improves one’s concentration.
- Lesser Skin Issues:
When you sleep in your belly or your sides, the skin of your face is in direct contact with your pillow. Your pillow is a house to countless bacteria and germs. When these come in contact with your skin, they cause breakouts. Also, due to the surface of the pillow, the skin faces tension which might cause wrinkles on it.
If one makes some effort to sleep on their back, they can reduce the contact between their skin and their pillow and hence will have lesser skin issues like wrinkles, breakouts, etc. Also, if you apply night creams, etc. on your skin before sleeping, there are chances that it may get wiped off due to the pillow surface, but if there is less contact, the cream can stay for long.
- Less Puffiness:
Before we get to the part where we list measures to control puffiness, first we must understand the cause behind this puffiness. When one sleeps on their belly or their sides, a part of their face is pushed against the pillow. This is the part where the fluid comes near the surface and pools. So when one wakes up in the morning, they have a puffiness on their face, especially the area around their eyes.
To avoid this puffiness, one can sleep on their back. Lesser will be the contact between skin and the pillow, the lesser will be issues related to puffiness.
- Relieved Sinus:
When one keeps their head on a higher plane compared to their heart, the mucus in their nasal passages and the fluid are drained by gravity. On the other hand, if the head is lower to the heart, there shall be excessive nasal blockage due to the mucus build-up in the sinuses. One shall hence wake up with a clogged nose and might even face difficulty in breathing while sleeping.
- Relief from Headache:
When one sleeps on their belly on their sides, they can face problems like a headache on just one part of the head or face, a stiff neck, pain near the sockets of the eyes, painful coughing or sneezing, increased sensitivity towards light and noise, a compromised vision, and weak digestion stomach. To prevent these, one should sleep on their back.
In this article, we talked about how sleeping on the belly or the sides can have repercussions and hence one should sleep on their back. One can prevent several problems by sleeping on their back, like Reduced back pain, better breathing, Lesser skin issues, less puffiness, Relieved sinus, relief from headache, etc. Sleeping on the back is also good for infants since it prevents sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
When one breathes better, it not only improves their health but also improves their mood. Sleeping on the back keeps the back aligned with its curves and hence with a good posture, one can prevent any issues related to the spinal cord.