Explaining water pillows and three other specialty headrests
The Washington Post explains different types of specialty pillows and shares guidance from experts including George Cyril, MD, FAAPMR, physiatrist at HSS.
Dr. Cyril explained that for cervical pillows, “What they’re trying to do is accentuate the natural curvature of your neck.”
He added, “A lot of times when folks have back or neck pain, they’ve kind of lost that natural curvature, and that’s put a lot of strain on their neck.” Nestling your head into a cervical pillow, the thinking goes, takes pressure off the neck, alleviating pain, he said.
He recommended cervical pillows for those who sleep on their backs, but side sleepers should avoid them. “They’re usually not high enough to support your neck if you're a side sleeper,” which could lead to more pain, he added.
Dr. Cyril noted that buckwheat pillows are a nice alternative to water pillows for side sleepers who crave a pillow that will remain consistent throughout the night but don’t want to deal with water.
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