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What Side Should You Sleep On Best Sleeping Position

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Update: May 23, 2023
5 min read

Written by

Rahul Upadhyay
Content Writer
What Side Should You Sleep On

If you have ever gone through a sleep article, you must have seen sleeping on your back has always been celebrated. However, research shows that side sleeping is more common in older adults. And even if you sleep on the back, you may end up sleeping on the side. But are there any benefits to side sleeping? If yes, what side should you sleep on? In today’s article, Sleep Guides India will tell you everything you must know about side sleeping and how to sleep on your side. Read ahead!

Benefits of Sleeping On Your Side

If you are thinking of switching your sleep position, side sleeping may be just right for you because of all its benefits. Here’s a rundown of all the advantages.

Back pain relief

You must have seen memes about how back pain becomes a constant as you get older. But the solution is to switch your sleep position. Sleeping on your side is known to be beneficial here. You can also place a pillow between your knees for more comfort. 

Reduced risk of snoring and sleep apnea

If you are a snorer, you tend to snore more when you are on your back. Therefore, sleeping on your side can be beneficial for someone suffering from sleep apnea or who tends to snore a lot. 

Improved gut health

Did you know? Your body position can influence your digestion. When you lie on your back, you may feel gaseous. Here, sleeping on the side can do you good.

Improved brain health

Your brain is an amazing organ. It helps get rid of waste throughout the day and night. And your sleep position can help accelerate the waste removal process, and here, side sleeping can be beneficial.

Healthier pregnancy

For pregnant women, side sleeping is the best position as it makes it easier for the heart to pump blood throughout the body. It also helps prevent too much pressure from the belly. 

Which Side Is Best to Sleep On?

If you were wondering if sleeping on your side is bad, you now know that it can be beneficial. However, what side are you supposed to sleep on? Is it better to sleep on left or right side? Take a look. 

During Pregnancy

What side should you sleep on when pregnant? The left is the recommended side. Sleeping on the left enhances the blood flow to the heart, fetus, uterus, and kidneys. However, if you face discomfort, just switch to the right for some time and then sleep on your left again.

If You Experience Heartburn

Heartburn episodes tend to last longer and frequently occur when you sleep on your right. So, which side is better to sleep on? Sleeping on your left can be beneficial. 

If You Have Heart Failure

Studies show that people suffering from heart failure should opt for sleeping on right side. Sleeping on the left negatively affects how the heart functions, and sleeping on the back can pressure the lungs. 

Drawbacks of sleeping on your side

With advantages comes a set of disadvantages you must be aware of. One main drawback of sleeping on left side or right side is shoulder pain. This occurs because the shoulder you are lying on can collapse into the matter and cause neck pain due to the misalignment. 

Tips for Side Sleeping

Some of the tips that you can use while lying on left side or right to make things more comfortable are;

Medium-Firm Mattress

When it comes to a mattress, from soft to firm, people have varied tastes. However, it is recommended that a medium-firm mattress can be suitable for side-sleepers as it can reduce pain. 

Now, when the mattress is too soft, the heavier parts of the body tend to sink and cause spine and neck misalignment. However, when the mattress is too firm, it can dig into your shoulders and cause aches and pains.

Get A Pillow Suitable For Side Sleepers 

When sleeping on your side, it is essential to maintain the neck and spine alignment. Hence, you can always use a suitable pillow to help you with the same. For instance, a feather pillow may not be the best choice, and a latex pillow can be ideal.

Maintain A Symmetry 

Maintaining a proper symmetry where your neck and spine are aligned as you sleep ensures you wake up without any problems. 

  • You can use a firm pillow between your knees if you sleep on the side. This is helpful because it prevents the upper leg from moving the spine out of alignment. 
  • A pillow also helps reduce stress on the hips and lower back.
  • Now, make sure you pull your knees slightly towards your chest.
  • You can also use a small pillow or a rolled-up towel to help support the spine.

How To Change Your Sleeping Position

If you are willing to change your sleeping position to experience the benefits of side sleeping, take a look at the tips below. 

Place a Pillow Next To You

One of the simple things you can do is to place a pillow on your side to ensure when you roll over on the back or the stomach, it acts as an obstruction to help you stay on the side. 

Attach a Tennis Ball To Your Shirt

If you are a back sleeper, you can sew a couple of tennis balls on the back of your shirt as it will prevent you from sleeping on your back. And if you are a stomach sleeper, sew them in the front. 

Switch Up Your Pillow

You can always use a medium-firm pillow to perfectly support the neck by elevating it slightly and maintaining the spine’s alignment. 

Add a Mattress Topper

As a side sleeper, you need a mattress that’s just right and not too firm. However, if your mattress is too firm, you can always use a mattress topper. This can be inexpensive and also offer the firmness for a comfortable sleep. 


Sleeping on your side can have several health benefits and be ideal for pregnant women. However, if you are not a side sleeper, start slow. You can change your sleep position during your naps and once you get used to that, making the switch becomes easier.


Is sleeping on your left side good for your heart?

Yes, sleeping on the left side can be great for your heart and elevate blood flow. However, sleeping on the right is suggested for people suffering from heart failure. But you can speak with your doctor for the right advice.

What is the healthiest sleeping position?

Sleeping on your back and side can be healthy for you. When you sleep on the back, it protects the spine and provides relief from any hip or knee pain so you wake up feeling fresh. Again, side sleeping can help combat heartburn and is ideal for pregnant women.

What side is unhealthy to sleep on?

It is usually believed that sleeping on your left side can offer the most health benefits. However, you can sleep on either side if you suffer from sleep apnea or chronic back pain. 

What side of the bed do most females sleep on?

As per research, women prefer to sleep on the left side rather than the right.

What sleeping position is linked to dementia?

In one study with 165 participants, it was found that sleeping in a supine position for more than two hours per night increased the risk of dementia by four times. The supine position is sleeping on your back. Here, sleeping on the side can be beneficial as it keeps you sharp and boosts brain power.


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Written by

Rahul Upadhyay
Content Writer
10 years of experience as a content writer Previously worked as a copywriter for a health journal Ability to write in a variety of formats, including articles, white papers, and clinical trial summaries

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