How you sleep says a lot about you. Now, we’re not talking about that quiz you took online the other day that told you if you sleep in the fetal position that you’re tough on the outside and sensitive at heart. While some studies analyze sleep positions and personality traits (like this one), others focus on how your sleep position affects your health.
Here’s what you need to know how you sleep and what it means for your body:
Fetal position: sleeping all curled up on your side may be super comfortable (after all, 40% of the population does it!), but it’s not ideal. Sleeping in the fetal position inhibits deep breathing and puts strain on your neck and back. However, sleeping in the fetal position is recommended people who snore and pregnant women. A Business Insider article also claims that sleeping in the fetal position – a position of “low power,” as they call it – may make you feel “less confidant” and “more vulnerable.”
On your back: sleeping on your back actually minimizes face wrinkles (because you don’t smash your face into the pillow), promotes deep breathing and aligns the spine and neck. Sleeping on your back allows your mattress to give you the support it meant to! Snorers beware, though; sleeping on your back is the worst position for you. Pregnant women should also avoid this position. Back sleeping is also linked to sleep apnea, so those with this condition should avoid this position, as well.
On your stomach: tummy-sleepers take heed! While Audrey Hepburn glamorized this style in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, snoozing on your stomach provides anything but beauty sleep. It actually flattens your spine and put pressure on your neck. Conversely, snorers may find solace in this position!
On your side: sleeping on your side is a great way to reduce snoring as well as back and neck pain. It’s also great for pregnant women. There are even added benefits depending on which side you choose According to some doctors, sleeping on your right side lowers heart rate and blood pressure Some studies show that sleeping on your left side reduces heartburn. Sleeping on your left side is also good for pregnant women because, according to the American Pregnancy Association, it increases “the amount of blood and nutrients that reach the placenta and your baby.”
There you have it! Hopefully you can find a position that’s both comfortable and good for you. Feel free to tell us more about your sleep position.