A large number of people around the globe prefer sleeping on their side. If you too are a side sleeper shoulder pain as well as pain in your back and neck may be a common issue.

We have therefore come up with a list of handy tips that shall help cut out the bothersome pain and help you understand how to properly sleep on your side.


#1 Use Pillows for your Neck

Though there might be alternative sleeping positions to get rid of the pain, adjusting your current sleeping position is next to impossible for most people. Therefore, it is key that you choose the right pillow to aid you in your slumber.

Choose a firm yet comfortable pillow that can provide your neck the right amount of support it needs. Failing to place the right type of pillow under the head can cause extra stress on your shoulders while side sleeping.

Sometimes a higher pillow can help align your neck and spinal cord better than a flat one.

#2 Pick the Correct Side

A majority of side sleepers may not be aware of the effect put on your body by the side you choose to sleep in.

Researchers and sleep experts recommend picking the left side over your right based on the internal placement of the organs in your body. Sleeping on your left aids in digestion and blood flow due to the natural position of organs.

Sleeping on your right side may cause indigestion and lead to conditions like esophageal reflux and heartburn. 

#3 Invest in an Ideal Mattress

Picking the right pillow for your neck without buying the right mattress for side sleeping is the job only half done.

The pain you feel in your back, arms, neck or shoulder may be the work of your extra firm mattress. Hence, we recommend all side sleepers to opt for mattresses that are soft and comfortable so that the body can suitably adjust itself without putting additional stress on any pressure points in the body. However, if a mattress is too soft it can restrict free movement of the body, thus making your sleep harder.

Overall, mattress toppers have been effective in enhancing the comfort level of new and old mattresses alike, providing a better sleep experience for most people, so it’s is recommended to use one of the best mattress for side sleepers.

#4 Exercise

Sleeping on your sides for an extended span can cause your joints and muscle to get stressed. The best way to deal with this is to perform a round of light exercise such as stretching or yoga.

The aim is to relieve all stress from your muscles and strengthen them to prevent any risk of injury or pain caused by sleeping on your sides. Side sleepers can regularly follow a set of stretches that can particularly help you alleviate your shoulder pain. 

#5 Don’t Stress your Body

To further reduce the chances of pain in your muscles, avoid giving any additional physical stress to your body in the daytime. Picking heavy weights, intense workouts, and any such activities that put too much stress on your body should be avoided.

If you prefer sleeping on your arms rather than your pillow, you might want to start considering buying a new pillow. Apart from causing ache in your arms and shoulder, sleeping on your arms can also lead to conditions like paresthesia and carpal tunnel syndrome.

Do not hesitate to visit a doctor if you experience pain in your body parts to prevent further aggravation. 

#6 Using an Additional Pillow 

Placing a pillow between your knees can provide them the required amount of cushion to prevent them from hitting each other.

It can also give support to your hips by aligning your knees and take any additional stress away from your spine. An additional pillow on the side can also help you stay in your sleeping position so that you get an uninterrupted sleep throughout the night.


Experts generally argue that the best position for sleeping while minimizing body pain is the one where you lie on your back. However, those habituated to side sleeping know that the only way they can achieve quality sleep is by laying on their sides.

We hope that the above mentioned ways can help achieve you a good night’s sleep without stressing your body. 

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