Most people find additional pillows beneficial during sleep. Knee pillows are among the extra pillows that some people need to sleep comfortably. Knee pillows are handy for people who sleep on their sides. Although placing a cushion between the knees during sleep may appear strange, it's an excellent way of attaining the correct sleep posture.
Although most doctors may recommend an orthopedic knee pillow for people who experience pain, the good news is that you don't have to buy a specialized pillow to sleep comfortably. Many pillow options can fit your knees' natural shape and provide your body with proper support and height for proper body alignment. Sleeping with a knee pillow also enables you to sleep faster.
If you're unsure about getting or using a knee pillow, here are seven health benefits that you need to know:
Aligning The Spine
The main health benefit of sleeping with a pillow between your knees is spine alignment. If you prefer to sleep on the side, your knees remain knocked together throughout the night. Although you may feel comfortable and sleep uninterrupted throughout the night, this position strains sensitive pressure points on the shoulders and hips.
Often, this problem arises due to the uneven distribution of body weight. Using a knee pillow can support your legs and offer the comfort you need. Further, the risk of your spinal discs degenerating and getting herniated increases as you age. If you develop this condition, a knee pillow during sleep can improve your spinal alignment and relieve pain.
Relieving Muscle Tension Or Cramps
Knee pillows may also offer relief from muscle cramps and tensions. People who sleep in awkward positions tend to strain their body muscles and, in some situations, worsen the muscle cramps they may have.
In such cases, placing a knee pillow between the legs during sleep can keep the knees adequately supported and aligned, enabling them to sleep comfortably throughout the night. Aligning the body well can ease the pressure that causes muscle tension or cramping.
Alleviating Back And Knee Pain
The other health benefit of using a knee pillow when you sleep is alleviating back and knee pain. If you experience pain on your lower back regularly, placing a pillow beneath your lower back or knees can keep you from experiencing pain by reducing strain on the spine.
The pillow helps align your spine, allowing you to sleep well and keep aches and pain away when you wake up. Pain on the lower back and knee may indicate a condition known as sciatica. People who develop this condition experience pain from the sciatic nerve and travel through the lower back then down to the leg.
If you develop sciatica, talk to your doctor and get a knee pillow to help you sleep comfortably.
Providing Extra Support During Pregnancy
Mothers and their unborn babies need quality sleep during pregnancy. However, getting a comfortable sleep position for pregnant women can be challenging as pressure piles on the knee due to increasing weight.
The last months are challenging as joint pains add to the discomfort. Knee pillows can provide pregnant women the extra support and cushioning that knee joints need for comfortable sleep.
Preventing Hip Rotation
People who sleep on their sides without using knee pillows risk experiencing hip rotation. This occurs when the hips shift out of alignment, causing hip and lower back pain. Placing a pillow between your knees enables you to align one on top of the other, maintaining your hips' natural alignment during sleep. This reduces hip pressure for side sleepers.
Improving Blood Circulation And Breathing
Poor blood circulation can cause discomfort and fear due to numbness. Knee pillows can facilitate better blood circulation and keep you from experiencing tingling or numbness in your lower limbs.
Placing a pillow between the knees or beneath them allows you to keep them in a raised position. The elevation facilitates a natural flow of blood in the lower parts of the body while gravity draws the blood back to the heart. Further, knee pillows can prevent the development of varicose veins by improving blood circulation.
The twisting or swelling of veins characterizes varicose veins. For people who have breathing conditions like sleep apnea, a knee pillow can help with maintaining proper spine alignment that opens airways. If you like sleeping on the back, placing the pillow beneath your knees can offer optimal comfort and ease breathing.
Unlike other sleeping pillows, knee pillows aren't typical. However, these pillows can be invaluable for people looking to enhance comfort and alleviate pain during sleep. If you've not been using a knee pillow, getting one can provide you with many health benefits, including the six discussed above.