Do you constantly wake up with back pains and body aches and have no idea why? Have you considered adding or changing the pillows on your bed?
Pillows are not only meant for the head when sleeping or relaxing but there are other functions pillows can serve to help alleviate your pain. Let’s look at how you can use a knee pillow to relieve pains and aches while ensuring you enjoy a better night’s sleep.
What is a Knee Pillow?
It is a pillow made of memory foam placed between the knees when sleeping or sitting upright. It is ergonomically designed with two rounded notches where the legs fit perfectly and a strap to hold the pillow in place when sleeping.
The knee pillow offers comfort and support to your body. It molds itself to the contours of your body to provide a perfect fit.
What Are The Benefits of Using a Knee Pillow?
The knee pillow carries tons of benefits. If you are a side sleeper, it is the best pillow for you because when sleeping, your hips and spine can get out of alignment.
The pillow will, therefore, help your body align itself into the proper sleeping posture. How else can a knee pillow help you catch a better snooze? Here are the benefits in detail.
1. Helps promote blood circulation throughout the lower body
Placing a knee pillow between your legs as you sleep elevates your legs slightly, facilitating blood flow through the vena cava-the vein that carries blood to the heart. Ultimately, blood circulation in your lower body is significantly improved.
2. Improves spinal alignment
Most people who sleep on their side know what it’s like to wake up to back pain. While it’s one of the most comfortable sleeping positions for many, it puts a strain on sensitive pressure points along your spine, hips, and lower back.
For that reason, placing a knee pillow between your legs prevents your upper leg from pulling your spine out of alignment.
3. Great for hip alignment and blood circulation during pregnancy
Pregnancy exerts a lot of pressure on the body, and it is essential to maintain the correct posture for the safety of the mother and the unborn child.
Ideally, experts recommend that the best sleeping position for expectant women is on the side, most preferably, the left side. It allows for optimal blood flow for both the mother and the unborn child.
A knee pillow helps evenly distribute hip pressure to the thigh, ultimately aligning your knees to your hip and spine for a more balanced and relaxed lower body posture, leading to a more comfortable night’s sleep.
4. Reduces knee and lower back pain
You probably have felt the discomfort when sleeping, and your knees keep rubbing together. A knee pillow is the perfect sleep partner to help lessen the stress from knee stacking. The knee pillow will evenly distribute the pressure build-up from your knees to the thighs helping you sleep better while offering pain relief from pains and aches.
Moreover, if you suffer from sciatica- a pain radiating along the sciatic nerve from the lower back down to the leg, a knee pillow can help alleviate the pain. It opens up the leg and hip slightly, thus reducing pressing on the sciatic nerves.
5. Reduces pressure and relieves pain
Sleeping in awkward positions can strain muscles, worsen existing cramps or shift your hips out of alignment, causing aches and pains when you wake up. Placing a knee pillow between your legs as you sleep will keep your knees aligned, which also maintains the natural alignment of your hips. Consequently, reducing pressure, offering pain relief, and a night of more comfortable sleep.
6. Helps with certain breathing conditions
People with certain breathing conditions like sleep apnea will find the knee pillow quite beneficial to their sleep. This is because the knee pillow helps align your spine, which keeps your neck and back in natural alignment. This position then keeps your airways open for easier breathing as you enjoy your sleep.
If you sleep on your back, you can place the pillow under your knees for optimal comfort, and you will achieve a comfortable night’s rest.
7. Gives you the proper sleeping posture
A good sleeping posture is one where your ears, shoulders, and hips are well aligned. Sleeping with a knee pillow gives you the correct sleeping posture as it keeps your upper leg in line with the spine. This also helps reduce the stress on your hips and lower back.
To ensure you get the proper sleeping posture, ensure you pull your knees up slightly towards your chest if you are side sleeping. The right neck pillow should accompany this to achieve a comfortable and relaxed night’s sleep.
When To Use a Knee Pillow
The question most of you are probably asking is when can I use a knee pillow?
In most cases, a knee pillow can be recommended by a medical professional such as a chiropractor in an instance where they need to correct a spinal or hip alignment problem. Additionally, if you have had hip or knee surgery, your doctor will recommend keeping your knees apart at an equidistance.
Knee pillows can also be used by persons on wheelchairs or when sitting upright, and the knees need to be a specific distance apart.
Also, if you are a side sleeper, this pillow will ensure your nights are pain and ache-free, relaxed, and comfortable.
How To Use A Knee Pillow
It is important to know how to position the knee pillow to achieve the best sleeping posture. For example, it can be placed between the legs for side sleepers or under the knees for those who sleep on their back.
- Place the knee pillow while sitting on the edge of your bed. Its ergonomic design ensures that placement is effortless.
- Place the strap over and then under one of your legs. The adjustable straps keep the pillow in place throughout the night.
- Lie on your bed and ensure the pillow is on the inside of your leg with the strap just above your knee.
- Place the pillow on your bed where your knees are likely to reach.
- Lie down on the bed and adjust the knee pillow to ensure it’s placed right above your knees. Ensure you have adequate neck support to give you a comfortable posture.
You can also place the knee pillow under your legs to relieve the pressure off the leg muscles when you sleep.
Remember to remove the knee pillow if you usually wake up at night for a bathroom break or midnight snack. Walking with the pillow around your knee could cause an injury or cause you to trip.
What To Consider When Buying Your Knee Pillow
You have read all about the knee pillow and now are convinced it is the key to unlocking a wonderful night’s rest and the best sleeping posture. So what do you need to consider when buying yourself one?
There are factors to determine, including:
Your weight will be a determining factor when getting yourself the right knee pillow. If you are heavier than the average person, consider getting a thick and strong pillow so that you get the best out of your pillow.
Knee pillows come in different shapes and sizes. Thus, it is crucial to get a pillow that will be most suited for your sleeping position. It is also important to factor in your body type, space in bed, and portability when buying the right knee pillow.
The structure of the knee pillow will also affect the kind of support you will get. For example, it could be a thicker or thin pillow or a soft or firm knee pillow. This means that you need to try the pillow before buying it so that you achieve optimal sleep.
Ideally, a knee pillow should be four to six inches to allow your legs enough space to align. However, if it’s too thick, the space may be too wide, making it uncomfortable for you.
When purchasing a pillow, you are looking to better your sleep. Consequently, you need to find a knee pillow with breathable material to not sweat too much at night, giving you a restless and uncomfortable night.
Most knee pillows are made using memory foam, making them dust-resistant and hypoallergenic. What’s more, you need to find a pillow with a breathable pillow cover that is easy to wash and comfortable for your skin.
Are you pregnant?
If you are pregnant, you most likely have realized the challenge of side sleeping without suitable pillows to support your back. Therefore, getting the right knee pillow is vital to prop you up to ensure optimal sleep and rest. The most recommended type of knee pillow for expectant women would be a straight or an hour-glass shaped knee pillow.
We all want to experience a comfortable, well-relaxed night’s sleep as it helps set the day’s mood and keep you going for the next day’s activities ahead. To achieve all that, consider getting a knee pillow, and you will be well on your way to enjoying a comfortable snooze.