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Cervical Pillows For Better Sleep

10 June, 2019

, Sleep

Most adults need about 7 to 8 hours of quality sleep a day, and seniors to need the same amount. However, it has always been observed that as we age, we tend to sleep less. Also, the night’s sleep is usually a disturbed one, due to various reasons. For one, the stress or anxiety, or depression due to loneliness, etc. can be a cause. There could be health conditions like arthritis-related pain, or constant urination, etc. that disturbs the sleep. Or there may also be some sleep disorders or simple disturbances of the city life.

One other reason for seniors not getting good sleep could just be that they do not have a comfortable pillow. Most pillows that we use are called head pillows, and these are designed to support our head. While at a younger age, this is mostly okay, as we grow older, this can be an issue. The truth is that the neck is an important part of our body, and as we sleep, it needs support too. But the head pillows are not designed to support your neck, especially if you keep changing positions. This could result in neck, shoulder, arms, or spine pain. In fact, for people having pain related to spondylitis, using a head pillow can play havoc with the pain and sleep. The solution to such issues is to use a cervical pillow.

What is a cervical pillow?

The word Cervical comes from the Latin word ‘Cervic’ which means neck; therefore, a cervical pillow is nothing but a cushion for the neck. As we all know, the neck connects the head and the rest of our body and is vital. A healthy neck is very important to ensure the excellent functioning of many essential components of our body.

However, the traditional head pillows most often, offer little or no support to our neck throughout our sleep. This can, in the long run, prove harmful for the neck, and we end up having cervical issues. The cervical pillows are designed, keeping in mind the comfort and the support for the neck, keeping in mind the curve of the neck. This ensures a correct and natural pose of the neck and the spine, even in our sleep. Especially in the case of patients with cervical issues, these pillows can relieve the pain to a great extent and help correct the posture and the curve.

When to use?

In many cases, the doctor/orthopedic may suggest that you start using a cervical pillow, based on the issues being faced, and the diagnosis. A few of the issues for which the cervical pillows are suggested are:

  • Neck Sprain
  • Neck pain/stiffness
  • Back pain
  • Cervical spondylitis
  • Tension headaches
  • Arthritis
  • Morning hand stiffness and swelling

Note: Even with any of the above conditions, it is always best to check with your doctor about using a cervical pillow.


Cervical pillows help correct your spine and maintain it as even during sleep, the posture is maintained because of its unique and natural fitting design. It is believed that when one sleeps in proper alignment, it helps prevent many issues like headaches, neck and upper back strains, arthritis, and other problems caused due to improper sleeping postures. As we all know, good sleep can always out a person in a good mood the next day. Also, apart from the lack of sleep, making a person grumpy or less attentive, it leads to many health issues. Hence, using a cervical pillow, even when you have no specific problems, may be a good idea to keep certain issues at bay.


There are many options available in cervical pillows to choose from like cradle pillows, neck pillows, side pillows, cervical rolls, comfort pillows, and even travel pillows. Depending on the need, you may choose what works best for you, as there could be a specific need, or it may depend on your most common sleeping pose. They also come with different fill materials like foam, feathers, shredded foam, water, gel, gel fiber, etc. These are readily available in any medical shop, or even online retailers and can be easily purchased.

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