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October 31, 2019

The Best Pillow for Back Pain: Top 10 Options

The Best Pillow for Back Pain Top 10 Options

The best way to face the day is to have a good rest. Your health and well-being depend on a restful night, which can sometimes be elusive for those with chronic pain. Therefore, it’s essential to choose the best pillow for back pain. The right pillow will reduce pain and ensure you wake up feeling relaxed and refreshed. There are an enormous variety of options that exist today, and we’re ready to help you find the very best.

Comparison Table

[amazon box=”B0725349FN,B01K05C5HU,B01HXTO5AG,B01NBFBFJD,B01H8W34IC,B00V909F1K,B01MQSDYY9,B00PLM47AG,B01A8TPWS2″ template=”table”]

Product FAQ

1. What Is the Best Pillow for Back Pain?

One of the most common questions that physical therapists receive is whether neck or back pain may be due to poor pillow choice. The answer is yes. We spend an average of eight hours in bed with our pillows every night. The best pillow for back pain can be your most trusted ally against poor sleep. It can prevent or relieve some neck and back pain, and it is worth investing in.

2. How Do I Choose the Best Pillow for Me?

pillows
Image Source: pixabay.com

Which pillow is the best for back pain is a personal choice. There are many models, designs, and materials to choose from. The first thing you should know is that the aim of a pillow is to keep the spine straight, filling in the neck’s curvature and allowing for relaxation. Most importantly, the best pillow for back pain should make you feel comfortable. No matter what advice you get, the ideal pillow is the one that is comfortable for you.

3. What Are the Different Types of Pillows?

There are many types of pillows, each with different designs that have specific objectives.

Traditional Pillow

traditional pillow
Image Source: pixabay.com

The long, narrow traditional pillow is the most common. We recommend it for any sleep position.

Butterfly Pillow

The butterfly pillow is narrow in the center, and it widens at the edges. It is the best pillow for those with low back pain.

Cervical Pillow

A cervical pillow is an ergonomic option that has two convex areas and a concave area to adapt to the neck and head. In many cases of neck pain, the use of a Viscoelastic cervical pillow with memory foam can offer the necessary support.

Viscoelastic Pillow

Viscoelastic pillows are made from Viscoelastic foam, which easily conforms to an optimal shape that provides relief at the pressure points of the back. Viscoelastic foam is a material created by NASA to mitigate pressure on the bodies of astronauts at the moment of takeoff. It’s excellent for astronauts and those with back pain because of its soft foam, which is capable of absorbing impacts. When it absorbs the impact, it distributes weight evenly, which prevents pressure on sore spots.

Anatomical Pillow

Anatomical pillows are therapeutic and designed to improve pain. These pillows are also called ergonomic pillows, and they conform to your body’s shape. They are soft pillows that provide relief from upper and lower back pain.

Smart Pillow

A smart pillow is an innovative pillow that promises to improve sleep by measuring different parameters associated with rest. It feels just like a traditional pillow, but it embraces technology by using sensors that read movements. They also emit low-frequency waves, which can enhance sleep.

Lumbar Pillow

A lumbar pillow is used for sitting or lying down. Many office workers who sit in a chair for extended periods use lumbar pillows. Staying in the same position for a long time is harmful to the body and your inactive muscles. This can be prevented with the use of a lumbar pillow. Like the smart pillow, the lumbar pillow distributes weight evenly to reduce pain.

4. What Materials Are the Best Pillows for Back Pain Made of?

The Best Pillow for Back Pain: Top 10 Options
Image Source: pixabay.com

Some pillows are too soft and cannot support the weight of the shoulders and head. Others, however, are so firm that the neck and head are forced into uncomfortable and often downright painful postures. The best pillow for back pain should be soft and comfortable, but with the right amount of firmness. This is something that has a lot to do with the materials it’s made from. Most pillows are created with latex, memory foam, feathers, cotton, or Viscoelastic foam.

Synthetic fibers or feathers are pliable, so we recommend them for those who sleep on their stomach. For people who move around a lot at bedtime, latex and Viscoelastic are recommended, as they have a memory system and adapt to the person who uses them.

For those who have cervical or lumbar problems, it’s a good idea to try pillows with “smart” materials, which adapt to your body and sleep position to offer relief from pain and discomfort.

The best pillows for back pain are produced with anti-mite, anti-fungal, and antibacterial materials. Check to make sure you aren’t allergic to the pillow’s stuffing. There are several options to test, so don’t worry if you’re allergic to a certain material.

5. Does It Matter How I Sleep?

pillow
Image Source: pixabay.com

Another point to take into account when buying a pillow is the position in which you sleep.
If you sleep on your back, your pillow should be of medium thickness and firmness, allowing for a comfortable position for the natural curve of the neck. This means if someone were to look at you from the side of the bed, your head should follow horizontally with the mattress. If the pillow is too high or too low, you will wake up with pain and neck stiffness.   If you sleep on your side, you want to make sure your head is aligned with the rest of your back. If someone were to look at you lying on the bed from the side, your ears should both be at the same distance from the shoulders. For this reason, you’ll want a thick pillow that is firm so that the head isn’t tilted.
Even though stomach sleeping isn’t recommended, many sleepers find this to be the most comfortable position. A soft and narrow pillow is the best choice for stomach sleepers, as it allows your head to turn in a natural and safe way.
If you sleep in a combination of positions, the right pillow will be of medium firmness and can adapt to the different positions throughout the night.

6. How Do I Care for My Pillow?

pillow
Image Source: pexels.com

Hygiene is fundamental when taking care of your sleep health. We spend a lot of time lying in bed, and also breathing the air around it. To keep your pillows clean and hygienic, choose one with a breathable and washable cover. A hypoallergenic cover is recommended, and you should change the cover at least once a week.   You should plan to purchase a new pillow about every five years due to the loss of firmness over time. If you sleep as a couple, each person should have their own pillow.  

How We Reviewed

The Best Pillow for Back Pain: Top 10 Options
Image Source: pixabay.com

We’ve strategically gathered the information we needed to make sure we only included the very best pillows for back pain in this article. Our experts have consulted with sleep doctors and physical therapists and sifted through hundreds of verified pillow reviews. We are proud to say we have successfully narrowed our list down to the best of the best.

Overall Price Range

The pillows we’ve selected range in price from $ to $$. We’ve made sure to keep this list filled with affordable and budget-friendly options.  

What We Reviewed

  • Snuggle-Pedic Ultra-Luxury Bamboo Shredded Memory Foam Pillow
  • Fine Pillow | Sleeping Bed Pillows for Neck & Back Pain Relief
  • Spring Bed Pillows—Newest, Breathable, Neck and Back Pain-Relieving Sleeping Pillow
  • Sleep Innovations Cooling Memory Foam Contour Pillow With Microfiber Cover
  • Cr Comfort & Relax Sleep Memory Foam Contour Pillow
  • LANGRIA Knee Pillow Memory Foam Leg Pillows for Leg, Back, Hip Pain Relief
  • Pillows for Sleeping, Hypoallergenic Bed Pillow for Side Sleeper
  • Post Surgery Elevating Leg Rest Pillow With Memory Foam Top
  • Classic Brands Cool Sleep Ventilated Gel Memory Foam Gusseted Pillow
  • Cushy Form Knee Pillow for Side Sleepers

Snuggle-Pedic Ultra-Luxury Bamboo Shredded Memory Foam Pillow

[amazon box=”B0725349FN”]

Features

To begin our list of the best pillows for back pain, we have the Snuggle-Pedic. What we love about this luxury bamboo pillow is the zippered material for easy cleaning and keeping things hygienic. We also approve of the Kool-Flow technology, which makes sure this hypoallergenic pillow steers clear of sweat and moisture.

This pillow is made in the USA from 43% viscose of bamboo, 56.4% polyester, and .6% lycra.

Fine Pillow | Sleeping Bed Pillows for Neck & Back Pain Relief

[amazon box=”B01K05C5HU”]

Features

A roster of the best pillows for back pain must include pillows that promise to give sleepers a comfortable and supportive night’s rest. The Fine Pillow does just that. It offers a neutral alignment of the spine and neck curve adaptations to best support the body.

This pillow is made from a poly-fiber that feels fluffy with down-feel comfort.

Spring Bed Pillows—Newest, Breathable, Neck and Back Pain-Relieving Sleeping Pillow

[amazon box=”B01HXTO5AG”]

Features

A vital feature of the Spring Bed Pillow is its non-flatten system. It promises that even after 50,000 wash cycles, the pillow will be as fluffy as the day you bought it. This pillow is unique in that is has an inner coil system, so no matter how you sleep your spine and neck will always be properly aligned. This pillow is one of the best bargains on our best pillow for back pain list.

This pillow is made from 100% cotton.

Sleep Innovations Cooling Memory Foam Contour Pillow With Microfiber Cover

[amazon box=”B0029LHHP4″]

Features

This contour pillow is perfect for side and back sleepers. With its Microfiber cover, it remains the easiest pillow to care for on the list of best pillows for back pain. This pillow comes with a five-year warranty, making it a brilliant and durable purchase.

This pillow is made from Microfiber and memory foam.

Cr Comfort & Relax Sleep Memory Foam Contour Pillow

[amazon box=”B01NBFBFJD”]

Features

Our team was so excited to put the Cr Comfort & Relax pillow on the list of best pillows for back pain. The contoured wave design is a favorite among reviewers and sleep doctors. It’s made from their Gel-infused Air Cell Technology Memory Foam, which helps to reduce neck and shoulder pain and ease stiffness.

This pillow is made from a premium jersey fabric and Gel-infused Air Cell Technology Memory Foam that is CertiPUR-US certified for safety and performance.

LANGRIA Knee Pillow Memory Foam Leg Pillows for Leg, Back, Hip Pain Relief

[amazon box=”B01H8W34IC”]

Features

The LANGRIA Knee Pillow is a unique contender that we’ve added to the best pillow for back pain roster. This memory foam pillow goes between the knees for side-sleepers, helping to align the spine and ease lower back pain effectively.

This pillow is made from high-quality antibacterial memory foam materials with a soft plush cover.

Pillows for Sleeping, Hypoallergenic Bed Pillow for Side Sleeper

[amazon box=”B00V909F1K”]

Features

We’ve added this, the only adjustable pillow, to the list of best pillows for back pain. This bamboo memory foam pillow comes overstuffed so customers can remove as much foam as they need to for the perfect sleep. This pillow is ideal for the side sleeper who likes to stay cool at night. Rated number one by Wirecutter, this pillow is made with the highest, ultra-deluxe quality.

This pillow is made in the USA from memory foam and certified by CertiPure-US to ensure safety and durability.

Post Surgery Elevating Leg Rest Pillow With Memory Foam Top

[amazon box=”B01MQSDYY9″]

Features

Our best pillow for back pain list wouldn’t be complete without this post-surgery elevating leg rest pillow by Cushy Form. This pillow is perfect for post-surgery if a doctor requires leg elevation. It’s also the best pillow for aching feet, knees, and back. It promises to improve circulation and reduce the discomfort of swollen feet, making it an excellent purchase for pregnant women.

This pillow is made from high-density memory foam.

Classic Brands Cool Sleep Ventilated Gel Memory Foam Gusseted Pillow

[amazon box=”B00PLM47AG”]

Features

The Classic Brands Cool Sleep Ventilated pillow is the only pillow on the list that is gusseted. It’s the best pillow for back pain for side and back sleepers. The soft knit cover wicks away moisture, and the gel-infused memory foam supports the neck and spine comfortably.

This pillow is made from gel-infused memory foam and comes with a plush, removable cover that is machine washable.

Cushy Form Knee Pillow for Side Sleepers

[amazon box=”B01A8TPWS2″]

Features

The Cushy Form Knee Pillow is Amazon’s choice for sleepers. It’s the best pillow for back pain, sciatica, and hip, back, and spine alignment. This pillow is recommended by doctors, sports trainers, and physical therapists. If you suffer from restless leg syndrome or hip bursitis, this is the best pillow on the market.

This pillow is made from 100% Viscoelastic memory foam and is hypoallergenic.

The Verdict

The Pillows for Sleeping, Hypoallergenic Bed Pillow for Side Sleeper is the clear winner when it comes to the best pillows for back pain. It fits the natural curve of your body, and it’s top of the line for supporting your head and neck to ensure superior comfort. Almost all customers who have reviewed this pillow have agreed that its ergonomic therapeutic design reduces neck and back pain. This pillow never hardens, and it maintains a constant firmness and a comfortable cushiness so you sleep peacefully throughout the night.   When you sleep well, you’ll live a healthier life. When purchasing the best pillow for back pain, make sure you’re choosing one from this list so you’ll sleep comfortably wake up feeling refreshed and recharged every morning.  

Featured Image Source: pixabay.com

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Dr. Joe Jacko


Dr. Joe is board certified in internal medicine and sports medicine with additional training in hormone replacement therapy and regenerative medicine. He has trained or practiced at leading institutions including the Hughston Clinic, Cooper Clinic, Steadman-Hawkins Clinic of the Carolinas, and Cenegenics. He currently practices in Columbus, Ohio. Read more about Dr. Joe Jacko

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