Dr Gloria Ajiya, a family physician, says the appropriate sleeping position is key to maintaining optimal health condition in every individual.
She told News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja that “during sleep, the body cleanses out toxins from the brain, repairs tense muscles and refreshes the
mental state of individuals for the next day.
“It’s no wonder we spend about one third of our lives sleeping; we need it. However, the best sleeping positions are not always common knowledge.
“A lot of times, people will wake up from sleep feeling less rested than before,” she said.
The physician said that proper preparation before bed was a great way to getting the best sleep.
She attributed some common body aches to sleep issues and suggested that persons who woke up with sore shoulder in the morning should avoid sleeping on their side.
”It is also not advisable to sleep on your stomach since this will cause a misalignment of the shoulders. The best posture to alleviate shoulder pain is to sleep on your back.
” If you do not like sleeping on your back, try lying on the side that does not have shoulder pain. Draw your legs up into your chest and place a pillow between your knees,” she said.
According to her, sleeping with hands under the head is also not a good idea since it promotes an unnatural position of the shoulder.
The family physician explained that a person often suffers from back pain after waking up each morning, chances are that the individual must have been sleeping wrongly.
“It is very important to maintain the normal curve of your spine. One way of ensuring this is not sleeping on a too soft mattress.
“Although, this may sound counter-intuitive, sleeping on your back is probably the best position for you. Place a pillow under your knees to help restore the natural curve of the spine.
“You can also try placing a small rolled-up towel under your back for additional support.
“If you want to sleep on your side, try sleeping in the fetal position, which will keep your back naturally arched,” she said.
Ajiya said that wrong sleeping position could cause neck pain, adding that it was important for the neck to be properly supported.
According to her, sleeping on the back with a pillow under the head and a pillow under each arms is the best way to prevent neck pain.
Ajayi, however, urged people with neck problems to choose orthopedic or roll pillows for best support.
“If you absolutely love sleeping on your side, make sure your pillow is not too high; not more than six inches.
“The height of your pillow should be the width of one shoulder to help keep your neck steady,” she said.
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