Your Best Sleep Position

The way you lie down can impact your health—and fight off some common traveler ailments.

When it’s bedtime, don’t just flop down and expect the best—especially if you’re fighting problems like heartburn, back pain, or nasal congestion. Instead, take a minute to get into the right position, and you can wake up feeling better.

Fight heartburn on your left side.

This position puts less pressure on the lower esophageal sphincter, which is the body’s tool to keep stomach acid where it belongs. Try resting with your knees curled up slightly and arms in front of you.

Fight back pain by supporting your legs.

Lie on your side with knees slightly bent and hips stacked one on top of the other (letting your top hip rotate forward will put pain-inducing pressure on your lumbar spine). Place a firm pillow or two between your knees to keep your legs hip-width apart. It might feel funny at first, but don’t give up.

Fight sinus pain on your side.

Then put an extra pillow under your head and let gravity help with drainage. Hug another pillow so your arms have extra support.

Fight a stiff neck on your back.

The trick is to keep your neck in a neutral (read: straight) position. Don’t put your arms behind your head. You can also consider skipping the pillow altogether and sleeping with your head flat on the mattress, which can help straighten the neck.


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From the publishers of Men’s Health and Women’s Health

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