This is what the position you sleep in is doing to your body

omg 22/06/2018

Finding a comfortable position to fall asleep can be a difficult task, sometimes leading to hours and hours of tossing and turning. 

Well studies have now revealed that certain positions can have negative effects on your health - who would've known!

Here are four poses we often sleep in, and whether or not they're good for your health: 

The foetal position:

According to Sydney-based sleep coach Elina Winnel, we should avoid falling asleep in the foetal position because it makes our bodies think we are in danger:

"What we may not realise is that we are putting our body into a fight or flight posture," she said.

"If we go to sleep in this position, we may be signalling to our nervous system that we are in fight or flight, and that it is not safe to go to sleep."

She recommends sleeping with an open posture instead as it helps open up the lung area, allowing you to take deep breaths. 

Sleeping on your side:

Dr. Ron Elrich, author of A Life Less Stressed, believes sleeping on your side is one of the better positions for you to fall asleep in. 

"From a structural, neurological and muscular perspective, as well as for your airway it is kinder to the body," he said.

"It also happens to be better for digestion, particularly lying on the left side, considering where the oesophagus enters the stomach."

Lying on your stomach: 

This is the worst position to sleep in according to Dr Elrich. 

"Stomach sleeping is the worst. It places strain on the muscles of the head, neck and jaw, strains the jaw joints, can also twist the lower back and pelvis," he said.

"Imagine wringing out a wet towel and that's pretty much what you do to your muscles and joints while you are asleep on your stomach. It can also restrict your ability to breathe well while sleeping."

Shelby Harris, a sleep medicine expert and professor at Albert Einstein College of Medicine agrees.

"You’re likely to wake up with numbness and tingling, and it can increase the chance of muscle and joint pain," she said. 

On your back:

Many sleep experts think this is the best position to sleep in overall. Dr Mark T. Brown said people should be sleeping on their back with their neck, head and upper chest slightly elevated.

"This provides rest for shoulders and back and also helps acid reflux, (in which stomach acid flows backward into the oesophagus)," he said.

Well there you have it, we'll definitely be trying to stick to sleeping on our backs from now on.

Source: Daily Mail