imyeyes-banner-sqIn My EyesBy Edward B. Antonio

How sleeping on your left side affects your health

How do you position in bed when you sleep, fellas?

Do you sleep on your left side? right side? on your back or on your stomach?

Can you sleep sitting down on a rocking chair or just simply leaning your body and head on a table?

Did you know that your sleeping position may affect your general health?

Many people wonder whether their sleeping position can contribute to back or neck pain or even stomach issues. Some people wonder if sleeping on the left side is better than sleeping on the right side.

My research says that the worst sleeping position is on your stomach. Sleeping on your stomach can be hard on your back, shoulders and neck and makes it difficult to maintain a natural curve of your spine. It can also lead to shoulder pain from sleeping.

Sleeping on your stomach puts pressure on your joints and muscles which can lead to pain, numbness, and tingling.

If you can’t sleep any other way, reduce the strain on your back by placing a pillow under your pelvis and lower abdomen. Also place a pillow under your head if it doesn’t place too much strain on your back, but if it does cause strain, don’t use pillow at all.

How about sleeping on the left side?

The majority of Americans (63%) prefer sleeping on their side. In this position, the person sleeps on the side while the back is slightly curled with knees bent and arms folded.Many consider this position to be the healthiest, as it helps to keep your airways open and matches the natural curve of the spine. To make this position even better, you can add a pillow between your knees to reduce stress on the hips.

Sleeping on the left side helps relieve heartburn (acid reflux). If you tend to suffer from heartburn, then sleeping on your side (especially on the left) can also make a difference. Research has found that sleeping on the left side can relieve heartburn symptoms, while right-side sleeping makes them worse.The reason for that is not entirely clear and several theories have been raised about this issue.

Sleeping on the left side is good for pregnant women. Sleeping on the left side is also recommended during pregnancy to improve blood circulation and to allow your blood an easier way from the heart to the placenta to nourish the baby.

It also keeps the expanding body weight from pushing down too hard on your liver.

Also, to prevent snoring, one of the first ways to prevent it is to ensure that you sleep on your side, not on your back.

Doctors say that a common cause of snoring is sleeping on your back. If you are asleep on your back, your tongue obstructs your airways which results in snoring.

Jenny Hills adds that sleeping on your side is good for the brain and could prevent Alzheimer’s Disease. A recent study from Stony Brook University suggests that sleeping in the side position, as compared to sleeping on the back or stomach, may more effectively remove brain waste. The findings were published in the Journal of Neuroscience on July 2015. This could help reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease because the buildup of brain waste may contribute to its development as well as other neurological conditions. The brain’s cleansing process, called the glymphatic system, clears waste from the brain similarly to the way the body’s lymphatic system clears waste from the organs. This process is most efficient during sleep. A build-up of brain waste can negatively affect brain processes, and if this waste is not properly disposed of, the chances of neurological diseases can increase.

However, a research published in April 2001 suggests that consistently sleeping on one side of the body may make this weight-bearing side more prone to kidney stones. The research checked 110 people who suffered from kidney stones on one side of their body and found that patients’ stones frequently recurred on the side they favored during sleep. It was also suggested in the study that the sleeping position affects blood flow to the kidneys and can cause temporary slow-downs in circulation to the kidneys so it affects the kidney’s ability to clear itself of various substances. The study suggested that changing sleeping habits may help prevent recurrent kidney stones.

Now, what what happens when you sleep on your back, fellas?

Hills says that while sleeping on your back is better than sleeping on your stomach (as your back, head, neck and spine maintain a neutral position), it still has its drawbacks. Sleeping on your back is not recommended if you are prone to snoring. Sleeping on your back can also cause your tongue to fall inwards which can block the breathing tube. At the later stages of pregnancy, it is recommended to avoid lying flat on your back, as in that position the weight of the uterus presses on the spine, back muscles and major blood vessels, which can decrease blood flow around your body and to the baby.

If you suffer from backache, it is recommended to place a pillow under your knees and try a small, rolled towel under your lower back for extra support and to help maintain the curve in your back. Also don’t forget to support your neck with a pillow.

So, there you are, fellas.

These things are backed-up by scientific research.

The conclusion?

  The best sleeping position is sleeping on your side.

Unless you are dead drunk and you can just sleep in any position.

And sometimes, anywhere, too! ●