I'm reading 8 Steps to a Pain-Free Back and have just begun trying stretchlying. I was wondering if I absolutely need to use a pillow, and whether the recommendations are the same for a person with a straight cervical spine. I used to sleep on my back with a thin foam contour pillow, but after x-rays recently showed that my cervical and upper thoracic spines are completely straight, I've stopped sleeping with a pillow at all, and am using a rolled up towels, about 2-3 inches thick, under my neck. From the book, this seems to be exactly the opposite of what I should be doing. But, the chapter on stretchlying doesn't specifically address overly straight necks, only overly curved ones. My doc thinks it could be from whiplash from a car accident some years ago. I'm doing PT on it, but the therapists haven't said anything else except that it was fine for me to use a towel. The other comfortable position at the moment is with no pillow at all, but again the book doesn't recommend this. What's the best position for a person trying to remedy an overly straight neck? Am I doing myself more harm than good using a towel as a neck support instead of a pillow? Thanks.
September 28, 2014 - 2:34pm | 2 posts#1
15 hours 12 min ago
12/05/2013 - 11:02am
Thanks for writing and sorting through the neck issue. The pillow for stretchlying should be to comfort. Meaning, what feels best to you and your particular anatomy (whether curve or straight cervical spine). The important thing is to have the pillow partly under your shoulders about 2 inches so that there is a nice even angle, no undo tork on your neck. This also allows for your shoulders to move down as your neck is long during stretchlying. I think you would benefit from taking the Foundations course and having a teacher use hands on to assist you. Good luck!