THE BEST POSITIONS FOR SLEEPING

We all toss and turn at night to some degree — it's just the body getting comfy — but one thing we get to choose is the position we drift off in. For a lot of people, from snorers to back ache sufferers, how we fall asleep can have a positive impact on the quality of our rest.

Here’s what the experts say are the best sleeping positions for all types of people and pets. Because at Casper, we're all about sleeping more (and better).

People who snore

Best position: on either side




There’s no shame in the snoring game, but that doesn't mean you always have to put your partner through it.

The number-one cause of snoring, according to experts, is any airway obstruction. Back sleeping makes it easier for the tongue to relax backwards and block the airway, which can lead to supersonic snores, and stomach sleeping puts the neck in a twisty shape, which is no good. It's why experts recommend side sleeping as the best position for nighttime rumblers.

People with back pain or neck aches

Best position: flat on the back or on either side




The best sleeping positions for back pain are those that avoid any twists in the spine. Flat on the back or balanced on one side are both good for keeping everything aligned. For achy spines, doctors also recommend taking weight off your back while you snooze. Adding a soft pillow under or between the knees should do the trick. And if you’ve got a smushy old mattress, consider upgrading your ergonomics with a firm(er) mattress surface to rest that body on.

Expecting moms

Best position: on the left side




Sleeping should be easy, right? But most parts of pregnancy are hard work, and soon-to-be moms need a lot of rest.

Doctors say that the best sleeping position during pregnancy is on the left side with knees bent. In this position, blood circulates easily between key organs like the heart, kidneys, and uterus. Side sleeping also keeps the growing baby from pressing down on some big, important veins. Also, pillows help! One between the knees and one at the small of the back keep mom and baby balanced and comfortable.

Hot dogs

Best position: the bracket




Many owners have probably wondered, why is my dog sleeping all crazy-like? We like to call this position “The Bracket.”

It’s harder for our fur-covered companions to cool off than it is for less hairy, two-legged people. This position, with all four limbs outstretched, lets a dog air out their core and bring down their body temperature. Did you know? A cooler body temp makes snoozing a breeze for humans, too.

Newborn babies

Best position: on the back




Brand new babies have a lot to learn, including good breathing habits; it’s not all eat-sleep-poop heaven. For this reason, pediatricians are united in saying that the best sleeping position for babies is on their backs, which gives them plenty of access to air and avoids any mouth-mattress contact.

Doctors also recommend a firm crib mattress with a fitted sheet—and to give these babies some space! Keeping toys away from the baby’s sleeping area might seem counterintuitive, but it keeps them breathing easy (at least, until they get hangry).

Cold dogs

Best position: bagel




We call this position “The Bagel,” and it is a perfect example of animal instincts.

Both wild and domestic dogs curl up to conserve heat (and protect themselves from any threats—rawr). That’s why your pooch may end up in a little ball shape on a chilly night. We recommend tip-toeing around a Bagel’d dog, because this position is less conducive to REM sleep than others and she might startle easily.

People with belly aches

Best position: upper body elevated




Nausea, heartburn, indigestion, upset stomach… Insomnia!

Finding external calm when your insides are churning is a pain. Doctors recognize heartburn and conditions like gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) as a cause of insomnia—but there may be a sleep solution worth trying. The best sleeping position for indigestion, heartburn, and GERD is to elevate the upper body, so that acid stays low in the belly. Medical experts recommend actually elevating the top of the bed frame. This is because propping oneself up with pillows instead bends the body and can put pressure on the belly.

People who are sunburned

Best position: in the buff




Calling all lobsters! Deep slumber can be elusive for a body that’s stinging all over. To avoid painful friction against burned parts, the best sleeping “position” with a sunburn is often in the buff. Getting nude-y with it cant not only help reduce friction, it can also help skin breathe and lower body temperature.

Other tips for sleeping while sunburned: use your softest sheets (silk if you’ve got ‘em) and stay moisturized.