The importance of good night sleep and rest cannot be overemphasized. Whether you’re napping or tucking in for the night, the quality of your sleep is highly dependent on your mattress and pillow.
Today we take a look at the memory foam pillow, its benefits, and how it can provide comfort and help you sleep better.
What is a Memory Foam Pillow?
This is a type of supportive pillow made from memory foam. It is different from regular pillows because it changes shape when pressure is applied to match the form of the pressure source and then reverts slowly to its original shape once pressure is no longer applied.
The major part of memory foam is polyurethane. This is a material gotten via a polymerization process. It contains a unique blend of different materials including water, polyols (petroleum, glycerine, etc.), and isocyanates. The combination of these ingredients gives it an open cell structure which allows it to be malleable.
This property helps in the relief of chronic pain. Charles Yost invented memory foam in 1966 to enhance the safety of astronauts during take-off. Though it took a while for the memory foam to gain popularity in the mass market, its adoption in the medical field eventually resulted in its use in producing sofas, pillows, insulators, and even car parts.
These products began to dominate the market in the early 2000s (around 2006). This was after an improved version of memory foam was introduced.
Benefits of Memory Foam Pillows
There are so many benefits that come with using a memory foam as an ideal pillow and sleeping accessory. Its malleability is perhaps its standout feature since this allows it to change its shape to soothe its users specifically. This and other benefits (which we would get into right away) make it an outstanding orthopedic option and a great addition to any bedroom.
1. Spinal Alignment
Poor spinal alignment can be such a pain because it can lead to more trouble when it results in headaches, neck pain, or backaches. Using a memory foam pillow ensures proper alignment of the cervical spine. It is perhaps one of its best benefits health-wise.
Regular pillows usually sink in, supporting the neck in a tilt, but a memory pillow allows even weight distribution and supports the neck and spine in their natural positions. It eliminates unnecessary strain, allows appropriate relaxation of the muscles, and enhances deep sleep.
Proper spinal alignment helps eliminate tossing and turning during sleep, promotes blood flow, and prevents pressure on nerves.
2. Relief from Neck Pain
Most of the pain we feel in our joints and other parts of our bodies comes from subjection to unnatural positions for long periods. For example, you may begin to feel pain in your neck and upper back regions after many hours of sitting in a chair doing computer work.
Since the memory foam supports the relaxation of the neck in its natural position, it offers a therapeutic solution and helps relieve stiffness, neck pains, shoulder pains, and upper back pain.
Because regular pillows cannot retain their shape, they eventually flatten out after about six months. A memory foam pillow takes back its shape after use because of its higher density and so lasts longer than other pillow types. The average lifespan of this type of pillow is between 3-5 years.
4. Proper Neck Support and Body Contouring
Memory pillows offer just the right balance and resistance to pressure in order to align your neck properly. It allows your head to ease into the pillow rather than sink into it fully and supports it at a comfortable height and natural position. This resistance ensures that the pillow doesn’t go flat and will retain a uniform shape and form until the pressure source is retracted. Having proper neck support this way can help prevent neck pain for both back and side sleepers.
5. Personalized Comfort
Memory pillows adjust its form so suit your natural curves. This makes it suitable for most sleeping positions. Whether you are a side sleeper, a stomach sleeper, or a back sleeper, memory pillows are designed to adjust to the curves and angles of your body and offer extra support and padding to major pressure points. A super soft cover further improves the comfort you get from using this pillow.
Thanks to their dense structure, memory foam pillows do not support the growth and development of bacteria that translate to molds and dust mites. They are made of naturally hypoallergenic materials. Hypoallergenic means “containing fewer allergens” (allergens are substances that trigger allergic reactions such as spores, dust, and pollen).
If you’re concerned about dust build-up in your bedroom, we recommend getting an appliance like a Dyson vacuum. Cordless vacuums with a strong suction and effective filter are great for eliminating microscopic dust particles and bacteria in your space.
7. Cooling Element
One defining characteristic of the class of material used in modern memory foam pillows is the presence of a polyester backed gel that promotes maximum airflow and ensures that it always stays cool. With the more open cell memory foam structure, pillows like this offer improved air circulation and can channel heat away from the body and disperse it within its structure to promote cooler night’s sleep.
8. Easy Maintenance
No one wants a stinky pillow. Unlike regular pillows that are difficult to clean, most memory pillows come with a machine-washable removable cover. This machine washable cover allows you to take them off and do justice to them when they are dirty.
9. Noise Reduction
In addition to ensuring the correct posture and providing good support, the ability of memory foam to change its shape uniformly makes it able to absorb noise produced during movement. It reduces disturbances during sleep and cuts down the chance of sleep disruption.
10. Lessens Snoring and Sleep Apnea
Because memory foam pillows allow the head and neck to relax in their natural sleeping positions and enhance spinal alignment, your airways are left open. This support helps to lessen the volume/frequency of snoring. It also aids persons who suffer brief interruptions of breathing during sleep (sleep apnea).
Memory Foam is Not for Everyone
As much as the benefits of this type of pillow are alluring, you must still practice caution before you proceed to purchase one for yourself or a loved one. Below are some categories of persons who should not be using memory, based on advice from health experts and professionals.
A memory foam pillow isn’t encouraged for infants because of the tendency to sink into it. Infants spend a lot of time sleeping. So there’s a high risk of suffocation if their noses and airways become obstructed by the pillow itself.
- Children under two years of age
It is advised children two years and below should sleep on their backs and that their sleeping surfaces should have adequate firmness to provide proper back support for healthy and strong growth. Memory foam pillows are soft on the surface.
- Persons sensitive to chemicals released during off-gassing
While the smell of new things is a joy to some, the odor given off when unveiling a brand new item causes irritation to those with sensitive noses. The release of a chemical-like smell is what is termed “off-gassing”. This bad smell is common in products like foam, plastic, and adhesives. It takes some time to clear out completely. The gases are not toxic.
- Restless sleepers
Memory foam pillows may not be suitable for you if you toss and turn a lot in your sleep. Some memory foam pillows take time to revert to their original shape, therefore, frequent tossing and turning during sleep would leave the pillow disorientated and disrupt sleep.
- Sleepers who get warm / sleep in warm conditions
Even with cooling gel, a memory foam pillow is still prone to retain some heat. Therefore, it is not an ideal accessory if you live in a hot climate.
Choosing the Right Pillow for You
There are different types of high quality pillows available in the market. Choosing the perfect pillow that suits you and your sleeping style is undoubtedly a delicate process. It is highly essential because how you sleep ultimately affects your state of mind, posture, and even your energy levels.
A good night’s sleep refreshes the mind and you wake up feeling energized. Poor sleep leaves you feeling cranky when you wake up. On average we spend about a third of our lives sleeping, that’s some quality time. Your choice of pillow depends. We’ve put together a few pointers below to consider when you’re in the market to get the best pillow.
There are two types of memory foam pillows: one-piece (block) and shredded. The difference is in their construction. As the name implies, one-piece memory pillows are made from a single piece of pillow fill. Shredded memory pillows contain numerous pieces of memory foam. These pieces are sometimes mixed with other materials like fiberfill, polyester, or latex. But in most cases, they are 100% memory foam. One standout feature of a shredded memory foam pillow is that you can customize the loft to your liking by adding or removing the filling.
Memory foam pillows are average in their prices. Anyone can afford them. Prices differ based on company customization of materials. Shredded memory pillows tend to cost more than one-piece pillows since they can contain other unique materials.
Pillows differ in size and how they affect your sleep. Your choice of pillow size should be based mainly on your sleeping position. Standard dimensions measure 20 × 26 inches and are suitable for you if you don’t change positions when sleeping. Body pillows (the largest dimension available) measure 20 × 54 inches and are best suited to side sleepers and pregnant women. Other pillow dimensions are the queen and king sizes.
If you’re a side sleeper, a one-piece memory pillow will suit you best because its loft is firm and high. If you’re a stomach sleeper, the shredded memory pillow is a good option for you. It also works well for combination sleepers.
A pillow naturally complements your mattress and balances the support for your neck and head for better posture. If you use a memory foam or latex mattress, it is best to use a shredded pillow because you only need a low loft to fill the space between your neck and the mattress. The high loft of a one-piece is the best option when using an innerspring or hybrid mattress.
Chemicals Used in Manufacturing
It is always important to check the tags of pillows you’d like to get to see the chemicals that make up the foam and ensure they’re non toxic. It helps you know the composition and ensure you’re not allergic to one or a few materials used in production. Watch out for heavy metals and other potentially harmful substances.
Memory Foam Pillow Malaysia
Choosing pillows that meet your needs can be a pretty daunting task. So we’ve put together a list of products that work well for most sleepers. Let’s dive right in!
Neckpro’s contour memory pillow provides strong support. Source: Shopee
This pillow is a contour pillow designed by NeckPro™ to minimize fatigue by providing support, especially to the head and neck regions. It features a pressure relief technology that soothes the head, neck, and shoulders while ensuring spinal alignment. It is 100% anti-dust mites and has a good temperature-moisture balance.
It’s also called the “Zero Pressure Pillow” because it is made of slow rebound memory foam that evenly absorbs impact forces and distributes the pressure. Its unique design provides cervical support and automatically adjusts to your body weight and shape to improve comfort all night long. It offers a balance of softness and firmness and comes in two sizes: small (48 × 30 × 10 cm) and large (60 × 34 × 10.5 cm).
It is made solely of memory foam. This pillow is a perfect fit for you, no matter your sleeping position.The pillow is made of materials that are resistant to mold, fungus, and dust mites. Users of this pillow have reported experiences of proper spinal alignment and pressure relief. Sleeping on this memory foam pillow is soothing and you’re bound to get a good night’s sleep. It has only one size whose dimensions are 40 × 70 × 12 cm. It weighs about 2kg.
Your pillow quality plays a vital role in how you sleep and affects your overall well being. The fact that there are plenty of options means you can consider various alternatives in order to find the best pillows with desired level of support and comfort.
Feel free to comment with any questions you have and we’ll get back to you. Memory foam pillows offer a rich blend of these benefits which makes them a priceless sleep and rest accessory for many sleepers.
If you’re looking to try one, we recommend the Neckpro Memory Foam Contour Pillow for its price, pressure relief technology and hypoallergenic quality.