(HealthyLifeHacks.net) – Replacing clothing and sheets is common, but what about our pillows? Most of us have probably had the same pillow for a long time. While it might be comfortable, it’s not a healthy choice. Changing to a new pillow may be an important step to improving physical health and quality of life. Here’s why.
When Should You Replace a Pillow?
According to experts, people should replace their pillows at least once every two years. But most people probably end up keeping a pillow much longer than that. Why? Because they’re used to the pillow they have, and they often find it comfortable. Plus, there are a lot of different options on the market.
Choosing an affordable, quality pillow isn’t always easy. Plus, there’s the comfort issue again. People get used to what they have, and they may worry that something new might reduce their comfort level and require a break-in period. Instead of doing that, they just keep using what they have so they don’t disrupt their comfort.
Why Do Pillows Need Replacing?
In addition to the “once every two years” recommendation, there are other times when replacing a pillow may be the right choice. Pillows eventually go flat, and when they’re too flat, they may push the neck and spine out of alignment. That can mean sleeping in an uncomfortable or unnatural position every night, for months or even years. Over time, that may create avoidable neck and backaches.
Another good reason to replace a pillow is to avoid or reduce allergies. Pillows collect skin flakes, fungi, spores, and all types of bacteria. All of those things are right next to the head and face all night, every night. For people who are immunocompromised, this may be dangerous. Even for healthy people, however, the chance of getting sick may increase when sleeping on the same pillow for too long. Washing a pillow frequently and using good pillow covers may help, but it won’t entirely prevent the potential for issues.
How to Choose the Right Pillow
There are so many different types of pillows on the market. How do we choose the one that’s best for us? Good Housekeeping recommends the following tips:
- Consider desired firmness. This all comes down to personal preference. For a soft, fluffy pillow, consider down or down alternative pillows. Memory foam pillows or latex pillows are ideal for those who prefer firmness.
- Take sleep position into consideration. Stomach sleepers fare best with thin pillows to keep their necks in a neutral position. Back sleepers are best-suited for medium thickness because it helps keep their necks aligned. Side sleepers should opt for a thicker pillow for better neck support. Position changers should opt for a plush pillow, perfect for moving a lot throughout the night.
Protecting our health and safety is essential and could be as simple as a new pillow in some instances. No matter how comfortable a particular pillow feels, the rule of replacing it at least once every two years stands. That may reduce allergies and other problems and help prevent the risk of serious disease in immunocompromised people. Even if the pillow has been washed frequently and kept in a pillow cover, two years is still long enough for its useful life. Replacing a pillow may aid in spinal alignment, helping us obtain a better night’s sleep.
~ Here’s To Your Healthiest Life!
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