The 2 Minute Fix: Picking a Pillow

This post is part of a new series I’m calling “The 2 Minute Fix” which will be short videos to teach people easy self-care solutions to common movement faults.

The Problem:
I definitely get this questions a lot. What pillow is the best for me? The answer is – it depends! The two best ways to sleep for your spine are back and side sleeping. Sleeping on your stomach is detrimental to spinal health and not recommended. Depending on whether you’re a side or back sleeper, I give my recommendations and tips for how to choose a good one for you.

The Fix
For side sleepers I recommend a semi-firm pillow that takes up the width of you neck to the shoulder. The water base one from Chiroflow is a great option, as long as your neck is in-line with the rest of your spine. If you have trouble getting your hips level, using a small pillow between the legs is also a good option. For back sleepers, I recommend a pillow that supports that natural lordosis (C-shape) of the neck. The Tri-Core pillow is a very inexpensive and supportive solution for back sleepers. For additional relief in back pain sufferers, using a soft bolster under the knees can help.

Yours in Health,

Dr. Scott

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6 thoughts on “The 2 Minute Fix: Picking a Pillow

  1. scottamillsdc Post author

    Good question! If you sleep on you back at all go with a pillow that has a small / mild cervical support curve to it but not an indent like the one in the video. Here’s a link to a similar style one –
    Ore you can use the water based one…it actually does a nice job for combo sleepers.

    -Dr. Scott

  2. Anika

    Hi Dr. Scott,
    Really enjoyed your interview on Jimmy Moore’s show! I’ve often read that we should sleep like our ancestors did, so without a pillow….what do you think of that position on this topic?
    Thanks so much and hope to hear you on more shows,

    • scottamillsdc Post author

      Thanks for finding me! For sleeping, I fall in the position of recommending either side sleeping or back sleeping on a relatively firm mattress. For pillows, I answered it in depth here –

      Thanks for asking! Hope that helps.
      -Dr. Mills

    • scottamillsdc Post author

      You can do fine with the style that has a cervical support. Just make sure it’s not too large as to force your neck into lateral flexion when on your side. The D-Core style is a pretty good one for combo sleepers.


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