If you’re a UC Berkeley student, you know how precious sleep is. The quality of your sleep can really make or break your day and affect the quality of your work. If you really want to make the most out of the short sleeping time we have, here are some tips to enhance your zzz’s according to your sleeping position.
Sleeping on your back
If you’re like the majority of us and sleep on your back, it’s important to make sure that your neck and spine are properly positioned, allowing your neck and spine to line up. If you have an existing back condition, try placing a pillow under your knees to reduce back pain. If you’re congested, use extra pillows to raise your head, as this will allow for easier breathing. Sleeping on your back is the best and easiest way to protect your spine, hips and knees.
Although this sleeping position may provide comfort and coziness, it can be a difficult position to keep your body in for a prolonged period of time. Make sure your posture is loose while you rest, since keeping yourself curled in that position can tense up your body. If you have preexisting joint pain or stiffness, this is probably not the best position for you to be sleeping in. The fetal position is best for your lower back and can help reduce snoring.
Sleeping on your side
If you sleep on your side, it’s imperative you pay attention to the condition of your shoulders. Your shoulders bear a lot of weight in this sleeping position, and it can also lead to jaw tightness on the side you sleep on. Put a pillow between your lower legs — this will help with the alignment of your hips to avoid lower back pain. The benefits to sleeping on your side include better digestion and less frequent heartburn.
Sleeping on your stomach
Sleeping on your stomach is the least recommended sleeping position, because it puts a lot of pressure on your spine and neck. You’re also putting a lot of unnecessary strain on your muscles and joints. If you must sleep in this position, it’s recommended that you use a thin pillow or no head pillow at all. This will help reduce the amount of stress on your neck. You can also place a pillow under your stomach to lessen any lower back pain.
As we get deeper into the semester, our sleep times will get even more limited, so it’s important to get the best sleep that you can. Use the tips above to ensure the quality of your sleep is the best it can be. You’ll wake up feeling well-rested and more energetic to carry on your day.
Contact Christina Kim at [email protected].