Neck Pain and Cervical Pillows


Cervical Pillow

Chronic cervical or neck pain is a widespread problem that can be the result of a neck injury (e.g., whiplash), pinched nerve, arthritis (osteoarthritis or rheumatoid), spinal stenosis, degenerative disc disease (e.g., bone spurs), and muscle related conditions such as neck strain, fibromyalgia and severe neck ache and stiffness (e.g., polymyalgia rheumatica (PMR)).

A cervical pillow can provide some relief from cervical pain by providing support to the head and neck while you sleep. Unlike regular pillows, cervical pillows are ergonomically designed to change the shape of the cervical spine whether you are lying on the back or the side. Selecting the best cervical pillow for you can be a trial and error situation since there are a number of factors to consider.

For Example:

  • Pillow Design – there are numerous pillow designs to consider – the contour pillow, roll pillow, dogbone pillow, wave or S shape, wedge, etc.
  • Pillow Material – foam, fiber, memory foam, water-filled, air-filled, buckwheat, etc.
  • Firmness/Softness of the pillow material
  • The Size of the person and the amount of neck support that can be tolerated
  • Size - pillow should support the back of the neck as well as the back of the head
  • Cost
  • Trial Period – is necessary to find the pillow that is most comfortable to you
  • Warranty

Other Factors to Consider Include:

  • A cervical pillow that restricts changes in sleeping postures or places more pressure on the back of the neck than on the back of the head might actually cause neck trouble. Don’t use the cervical pillow if it causes discomfort of any kind.
  • Although cervical pillows can provide temporary overnight relief from neck pain, it is always prudent to consult a head and neck specialist to determine the cause of your neck pain and to discuss alternative solutions.

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