If you occasionally or consistently wake up to morning stiffness and an achy neck/shoulder/back you name it, do not give all the praise and blame to a pathological injury because sometimes the solution can be right underneath you. There is a lot to consider when choosing the proper bed, pillow and mattress. In this blog post we will be discussing some spinal care education pointers that can hopefully make that next purchase a bit easier on your wallet and your back.
Physio Approved Beds
First off – beds. A good bed supplies firm, even support vertically and laterally (lateral being the side to side motion of the bed). The vertical support ensures that body contours are supported without sag. However, patients with structural deformities or obesity will generally require a softer mattress. The lateral stability ensures a decrease amount of side-to-side motion occurs in a nights sleep. Box springs and bed frames are highly recommended. Watch out for the use of mattress boards. A board placed between the mattress and box spring will increase vertical stability, but will eventually decrease lateral stability as this promotes breakdown of the springs in both the box spring and mattress. For a cheaper alternative look into foam mattresses on a wooden slate frame, however it is highly recommended to stay away from any type of waterbeds.
When looking into a foam based mattress always check out two scores of the mattress. 1 – Density rating, higher ratings yield a longer lifespan of the foam. 2 – Compression rating, this is the amount of pressure (pounds per square inch) that the foam can withstand. General rule of thumb is minimal 4-inch foam mattresses for individuals weighing less than 200 pounds. When working with a foam mattress a hard and fast rule after purchasing to maximize the contour is to flip the mattress end-to-end once per month. This will allow you to maximize the mattress’s density and compression.
Physio Approved Pillows
Lastly pillows. Chicken feather pillows are recommended as they provide firm consistent support for the head and neck. Feathers readjust and mold quickly to changes of head positions. Down pillows are highly not recommended, this is because the down provides support initially, but quickly becomes excessively soft and compressed within minutes and hours. Also stay away from foam pillows as they fail to conform to the shape of ones head, thus straining the muscular system.