Orthopedic Pillows: Reviews and Recommendations From Specialists

Sleep is one of the foundations of our lives. Without a good night of rest, most of us are unable to function properly. Sleeping well provides good health and weight loss, grants you energy for the entire day, and keeps mental health issues at bay. Unfortunately, while many of us claim to love sleep, most of us don’t get a good night of shut-eye that often.

It’s one thing if you don’t sleep enough due to being busy. We all know that feeling, as most of us lead our lives in a rush. But what if you’ve got the time and the will to sleep, but you find that every morning you wake up with aches in pains all over? Or what if, worse yet, pain keeps you from falling asleep in the first place?

Sounds familiar? We sympathize, but we also offer a solution. It might be time to pick up an orthopedic pillow designed to provide comfort and relief to those that suffer from head and neck pain. They are easily accessible and can be found in large quantities on Amazon.

Orthopedic pillows come in many shapes and varieties. They do wonders for your spinal alignment, relieving back and head pain, and promote adapting a healthy sleeping position. They also have other advantages over traditional pillows, from comfort to durability.

Are you constantly waking up tired, groggy, and aching all over? Do you snore or wake up with a dry mouth? Don’t worry, it’s not yet the time to book an urgent appointment with a chiropractor or a doctor. Before seeing a medical professional, consider trying out the best orthopedic pillow.

Are orthopedic pillows any good?

Many people find themselves feeling kind of skeptical about orthopedic pillows. Modern media and commercials often insist on there being just one solution to back pain — medicine. However, most doctors will tell you that painkillers should be used as a last resort. Oftentimes, the first step to solving pain issues is to correct your sleeping position.

They provide a means for you to get a full night of rest while allowing your spinal alignment to follow the ideal biological positioning. Traditional pillows often do the opposite — instead of helping us sleep well, they put our neck, shoulder, and spine at risk.

Promoted and recommended by chiropractors, orthopedists, and other doctors, these pillows come in a variety of shapes. Each type of pillow is used to correct different kinds of aches. If you find yourself having a headache every morning, the pillow we’ll recommend you will differ from the one that helps with pain in the cervical part of the spine. Because of this, no two kinds of pillows are one and the same.

This means that when it comes to orthopedic pillows, you’re able to get the exact type that will work towards making you feel better. Once again, this proves to be a major advantage over regular pillows. 

Traditional variants don’t have any specific shape, and what’s worse, they lose what shape they had over time. An orthopedic pillow, on the other hand, will stay firm and adapt to your body thanks to the unique filling used in most of these orthopedic pillows.

What are the different types of orthopedic pillows?

Orthopedic pillows can be differentiated by two factors: the filling and the shape. Both of these things affect how the pillow works and whom it is designed for.

Some of the fillings found in these pillows include:

  • Latex: These pillows are naturally long-lasting. They have a tendency to adapt to the shape of your body, but they do not lose their shape over time. Despite their healing effects, they remain very comfortable and soft to the touch. They’re also decent at staying cool throughout the night.
  • Memory foam: Probably the most common type of orthopedic pillow. Going a long way to provide pain relief, they can be contoured to match the position you sleep in. However, they do not give too much leeway and still help you maintain a good sleeping position.
  • Shredded memory foam: Similar to the former, these pillows are filled with shredded memory foam that has been torn to pieces. They’re more sculptable and allow more freedom in terms of how you choose to sleep.
  • Water: Yes, you heard that right! Orthopedic pillows sometimes come with a refillable water container inside. These are customizable and allow you to choose how much you want the pillow to budge when you sleep.
  • Buckwheat: These pillows are filled with buckwheat hulls. This gives them a highly moldable shape, making them flexible as they adapt to the shape of your neck, shoulders, and head. Such a blend of flexibility and firmness will go a long way in alleviating neck pain.

A memory foam pillow, much like any other type of pillow, may come with its own pillowcase. The most popular ones include a bamboo cover, cotton cover, or polyester cover.

Aside from the different fillings, they also span a wide range of shapes. These different kinds of pillows have often been designed by doctors and medical professionals to promote good spinal health.

It might be hard to choose the right type of pillow to match your precise issues, so let’s take a closer look at some of the most popular types.

  • Cervical pillow — also known as contour pillow, this pillow comes with a curved design that adapts to the neck, shoulder, and head contour. Ideal for those that sleep on the back and those that favor the side, it lifts the pressure that is applied to the upper parts of your spine when you sleep in the wrong position. It does wonders for neck pain.
  • Lumbar pillow — for those that suffer from lower back pain, this half-moon shaped pillow is often placed underneath the knees. This straightens out the spine and allows you to sleep on the side or the back without pain in the morning.
  • Wedge pillow — often triangle-shaped. This type of pillow lets you sleep in a diagonal position; this can be done when you lie down or even when you sit up. It may provide help with thoracic spine pain, but it’s also often recommended for acid reflux and GERD.
  • Body pillow — these types are often marketed as pregnancy pillows, as they are very helpful to future moms. However, they have qualities that can assist you with many types of back pain. They’re long, curved pillows that support your head, neck, back, knees, arms, shoulders, and more. You can cradle them as you sleep, adapting them to what you need.
  • Knee pillow — this pillow helps your spine remain straight in a side-sleeping position. As a lot of pressure is applied to the spine when you sleep unevenly, placing a pillow between the knees might be helpful.

Before we move on, ask yourself which type of pillow would be useful to you. Where does it hurt? Based on that, you will have an easier time picking a pillow you want to buy.

What pillows do chiropractors recommend?

Chiropractors are health care professionals that focus on treating the spine through manual adjustment or manipulation. Visiting a chiropractor is often one of the first steps people take when trying to improve the health of their spine and alleviate pain.

Many experts often talk about the high clinical value of using the best orthopedic pillow. As such, chiropractors often recommend buying one to their patients, with an emphasis on buying a specific type of pillow.

We’ve consulted some professionals and we were able to pinpoint the two most recommended orthopedic pillows.

EPABO Contour Memory Foam Pillow

This pillow comes with recommendations from health professionals for a variety of reasons. The chief of them just might be its shape — perfectly ergonomic and specially designed to alleviate many forms of pain, such as neck pain or neck and shoulders pain. Why exactly is this pillow worth your consideration?

First of all, it actually works. Thousands of happy users praise it for its therapeutic qualities and nearly instant pain relief.

It’s flexible in more ways than one. Whether you’re a stomach sleeper, side sleeper, or back sleeper, this pillow is going to serve you well. The memory foam it’s filled with gives a little room to adapt to your body and then remains firmly in place, granting you a soft, comfortable sensation as you sleep.

This is a memory foam pillow hich provides a lot of breathability and air circulation. You won’t want to flip it over the cold side up, because the material maintains a good temperature throughout the night.

If you’ve got allergies, you have nothing to worry about with this memory foam pillow. It’s entirely safe for people even with severe allergies. This is due to the blend of hypoallergenic rayon and polyester that the case was made out of, both of which let you breathe well.

If your neck and shoulders are hurting and neck pain as a whole is a constant companion, we recommend this memory foam pillow which is perfect for back sleepers, stomach sleepers, and those that sleep on the side.

Coop Home Goods Eden Adjustable Pillow

Some models offer little room for adjustment to preserve their therapeutic nature. However, not everyone is able to get used to sleeping in a certain position right away. If you want something recommended by doctors, but also highly flexible, look into this orthopedic pillow.

Heavenly soft to the touch, this Coop pillow is made out of memory foam and microfiber. This doesn’t just allow it to adapt to the shape of your head, it also makes sure that it stays cool throughout the night. No more uncomfortable nights spent tossing and turning!

To ensure the safety of this pillow, a lot of rigorous testing has been conducted by third-party laboratories unrelated to Coop. As a result, this pillow earned the CertiPUR-US and GREENGUARD Gold certifications for containing zero toxic chemicals. It’s also vegan & cruelty-free.

The most unique factor in this memory foam pillow is the fact that you can actually access the memory foam fill inside of it. This lets you add or remove more filling, which directly affects the firmness of the pillow.

For the patients that require a lot of flexibility and suffer from neck pain as well as other pains, doctors often recommend similar this kind of memory foam pillow.

What is the best orthopedic pillow for side sleepers?

Many of us love to sleep on the side, and it’s decent for your health. Sleeping on the side can provide relief from acid reflux. It also lets your spine rest if you lie down correctly. The problem is that most of us simply don’t.

It’s hard to tell which position is the best to sleep in without seeing a doctor. Many people curl up on the side or sleep in a position that is a blend of sleeping on the stomach and on the side. This is quite comfortable, but not the best solution when it comes to your spine.

Cue the best of orthopedic pillows. If you sleep on your side, you don’t have to fight yourself to adjust your sleeping habits — just invest in a good pillow. Here are some of the best pillows for those that sleep on the side.

MALOUF Z Talalay Latex Zoned Pillow

If you sleep on the side, you will benefit from having an elevated head — that is a fact. Allowing your neck to sink into the pillow is sure to cause you some achy muscles in the morning. For that reason, many people are forced to give up sleeping on the side. Don’t let that be you — consider picking up a MALOUF pillow on a reputable website such as

This is an elevated model, which means that it will keep your head high due to the thickness of this pillow. It does remain firm and doesn’t change shape over time, but it also allows you to sink into the pillow a little further than some other brands do. This creates a feeling of comfort and puts you right to sleep.

It contains absolutely no synthetic additives. Mildew-proof and dust mite resistant, this pillow is made out of 100% natural Talalay latex. This type of latex is derived from sustainable latex trees and is completely natural. The cover itself is made out of 100% natural cotton which is highly breathable and soft to the touch.

The perfect blend of firmness and surrender, this pillow offers great pain relief for those of us that like to sleep on the side. Your neck will be kept on the same level as the rest of your spine, effectively removing some of the most common lumbar spine pain issues.

OverstockedUS Side Sleeper Contour Pillow

Have you ever woken up with a feeling of your ears burning or, worse yet, hurting? No, it’s not just you. This is a common problem for millions of people all over the world, and the solution is quite simple — get a better orthopedic pillow, such as this Overstocked US model.

This uniquely shaped pillow was specially designed to cater to those that favor sleeping on the side. It offers a cradle-like feeling of absolute support for your head, neck, and arms. Such a contoured cushion, completely adapted to the needs of your spine & fully ergonomic, provides just the right amount of firmness to correct bad sleeping positions.

Each side of the pillow provides an innovative cooling ear pocket. As you rest your head on it, your ear slots right into the cooling divot, allowing for a pressure-less sleep. This, aside from the overall shape of the pillow, only further confirms that it’s a solid pick for side sleepers.

Doctors recommend this type of pillow to people who suffer not just from head, shoulder, neck, and back pain. This orthopedic pillow is also great for sleep apnea sufferers. Even if you or your loved one sleep with a CPAP machine, you can comfortably rest on the side with this pillow.

This pillow is filled with polyester filling which is both soft & firm at the same time. It won’t happen on the first night, but over time, you can count on it to adapt to the shape of your head and maintain its comfortable qualities for years to come. It has a great contour memory and is known to stay in the right position.

What is the best pillow for someone with neck problems?

Do you know what kind of health may be caused by a bad sleeping position? It’s unfortunate, but there are many. Some of the most common ones include:

  • Headaches
  • Breathing difficulties
  • Pain in the neck, shoulders, upper back
  • Stiff muscles
  • Cracking joints
  • Sleep apnea
  • Snoring
  • Dizziness
  • Numbness
  • Tingling in the hands/fingers

All of the above are tied, one way or another, with neck problems. Be it the cervical spine, sore muscles, or another underlying issue, most people at one point in their life suffer from neck pain.

To give yourself a good night of sleep, we recommend that you check out the best pillows for neck problems.

Sunshine Pillows Chiropractic Neck Pillow

Highly recommended by chiropractors and doctors alike, this pillow offers supreme neck support and is known to relieve many painful ailments. Let’s take a closer look.

Containing 100% polyester, this pillow contains a uniquely designed supportive column that has been filled with flax seeds. This improves the neck-care factor in it without allowing comfort to take a hit.

If you find yourself suffering from any of the aforementioned issues, it could very well be that your neck just doesn’t get the support that it needs while you sleep. We’re all guilty of sleeping the wrong way — this pillow perfectly corrects that.

It features one of the most customized fits on the orthopedic market. This pillow is designed for people with neck circumferences that range from 18 to 20 inches. This means that it’s suited for people with rather thick necks. However, if that’s not you, it also comes in sizes medium and small.

To relieve your neck pain and improve your overall health, consider sleeping the way that you should be. Check out this pillow as your first step towards good spinal health.

Standing Dual-Core Ergonomic Memory Foam Neck Pillow

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At a first glance, this pillow looks somewhat similar to the previous one. However, this one is not just ideal for those that sleep on the side — it’s just as good for stomach sleepers.

Featuring a unique dual-core structure, this pillow combines two layers. The outer core of the pillow is soft and comfortable, giving in to your head as you rest on it. The inner core, on the other hand, remains thick and firm enough to make sure you maintain a good sleeping position.

The slow rebound memory foam pillow material that has been used here is highly breathable and constant in terms of temperature. Don’t worry about overheating as you rest on this pillow.

The aforementioned slow rebound effect is actually really interesting. When you move, the pillow doesn’t immediately adjust — it takes some time for everything to even out. As the process is gradual and takes up to 12 seconds, it doesn’t apply any pressure to the skin.

It comes with a set of two protective pillowcases which are both skin-friendly, toxic-free, and anti-wrinkle. Enjoy yourself as you drift off into a luxury sleep with this affordable pillow.


Orthopedic health is one thing that is worth investing in early on before the issues arise. However, considering our lifestyles, many people as young as their early teens already suffer from symptoms of bad spinal health & care. If this is you, don’t worry. Most things can be reversed if you make the changes today.

We hope that our article has helped you find your way around the world of the orthopedic pillow. If you take itunder consideration, it’s possible that soon enough, you too will be sleeping well every night!

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