A lot of focus is placed on the harm of stomach sleeping, but there are plenty of benefits as well. But before we get into the benefits of stomach sleeping, let’s talk about some of the drawbacks of other positions.
Now let’s get to it.
As mentioned elsewhere in this review, stomach sleeping can not only assist with digestion issues, but it can also reduce muscle strain.
When sleeping on your back or your sides using a soft mattress, the body compensates by straining muscles during your sleep cycle that can lead to aches and pains. The truth is that this only intensifies as you get older.
Sleeping on your stomach also helps with conditions such as sleep apnea and snoring because you are no longer placing stress on the diaphragm.
Once again, however, the firmness of the mattress you choose will have a great impact on how well these conditions are lessened. The more firm the mattress, the more likely you are to reduce sleep apnea, snoring and other issues when sleeping on your stomach.
But how about other ways of sleeping?
Back sleepers are the most likely to suffer from sleep apnea. This disorder can cause breathing to be interrupted during the night. Lack of oxygen can cause high blood pressure, stroke, heart failure, headaches and even diabetes.
Less serious, but still harmful, a lack of oxygen can prevent sleepers from reaching a deep state of sleep, leaving them tired and cranky during wakeful hours.
Aside from sleep apnea, back sleepers are more likely to snore. This unpleasant nighttime activity is also a culprit of lack of sleep, for the sleeper and anyone who shares their living space.
Sleeping on one side can put significant pressure on nerve endings. This can immediately lead to numbness, and eventually to nerve damage. The only way to rectify this is to switch sides during the night, but many sleepers cannot consciously make this choice when they are technically unconscious.
Side sleeping is also difficult on shoulders. Because most side sleepers support their heads with one arm and shoulder, that joint can suffer from damage over time. Side sleeping can also place undue pressure on the heart and lungs.