Tag Archive for: sleep ergonomics

Water Pillow

One of the most difficult tasks for chronic neck pain patients is finding a pillow that secures them in a neutral, comfortable position throughout the night.  Too high a pillow places the neck in constant flexion (forward bending-not good for the discs) and too low of a pillow often isn’t supportive enough.  No matter how responsive a patient is to physical therapy, a malpositioned neck while sleeping can significantly contribute to a chronic neck pain.

Instead of having a patient purchase an expensive memory foam pillow I will often recommend using a regular pillow with a towel roll supporting the natural curve of the neck.  Although people do well with this configuration, the setup often falls apart at some point during the night.

I recently had a patient who has been on the search for the ultimate pillow.  After 3 years of restless sleep and painful mornings, she purchased the Water Pillow and states it is the most comfortable her neck has been in a long time.  It is a regular pillow with an adjustable water bladder which allows for individualized firmness and height.

I have not personally tried it, but her recommendation is one that I value and hope can help others who have neck issues.

Mediflow Water Pillow

Body pillows can be a great sleep aid but they tend to be fairly expensive. IKEA has a very affordable body pillow called the GOSA MÅBÄR which is about 3 ft long and is ideal for wrapping your arm or leg around to help maintain better posture while sleeping.