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Top 10 Sleeping Positions Everyone Sleeps In

a profile image of TSA author Alex

Written By Alex Petrović

Certified Sleep Consultant

top 10 sleeping positions

29 April 2024 5 min read

Sleep is one of the essential needs of every human being, yet so many people struggle with having a good night’s sleep. Without good quality sleep people tend to have a hard time concentrating and it affects their mental health. Proper sleeping positions can help achieve quality sleep.

Many research studies that have been conducted showed that lack of sleep or too much of it can lead to many health problems, from obesity, diabetes to depression and dementia.

It is a common misconception that the length of sleep is the only thing that matters. But as it turns out, another thing we should take into consideration is also the position we sleep in.

The position we sleep can lead to  snoring, heartburn and even wrinkles on your face. So let’s take a look at the top 10 sleeping positions and their advantages & disadvantages.

The log

This position is very good for your back as it places it in a straight position. Also, sleeping in this position also helps the mattress support your spine. Ideally, everyone should sleep with on their backs without any pillows as this allows the neck to be well positioned.
This is also ideal for people who would like to preserve their youthful appearance as long as possible, as the face is not touching the pillow therefore there is not friction which can result in wrinkles appearing on a person’s face.  

Now, let’s take a look at some drawbacks of this sleeping position. If a person is suffering from snoring and sleep apnea they will have a more difficult time sleeping in this position. The cause of this occurrence is the gravity. It forces the base of our tongue to block the airway in our mouth which makes breathing more difficult and the result of that are those unpleasant sounds that not many people like hearing.

an illustration of a log sleeping position


This is a position where you sleep on your back but your legs are spread apart and they are bent towards the sides of your head. This position is known to be helpful in treating acid reflux and beneficial for one’s spine and neck as they are placed in a neutral position.

However, this position has one disadvantage. It might cause some breathing problems which eventually may lead to sleep apnea.

a sleeping position called starfish

The dreamer

Believe it or not, this sleeping position is among the most popular ones.  In this position the person is lying on their back or side with their hands under their head or the neck. The hands  provide additional support of the neck which can decrease neck and shoulder pain.

The drawbacks of this sleeping position is the feeling of numbness in your arms and stiff neck if the hands aren’t well placed.

a back to back sleeping position

Bended knee

Most people use pillow to support their head and neck while they’re sleeping.  But, a pillow can be used in other ways as well. If you want to bring sleeping on your back to a new level, then placing a pillow under the back of your knees is the way to go. Placing a pillow under the back of your knees reduces stress and pressure on your spine and supports the natural alignment of your lower back while the pillow for your head supports the curve of your neck.

The only possible drawback of this sleeping position is that it might cause skin irritation as the pillow rubs against your skin while you are sleeping.

Left-side sleeper

Contrary to popular beliefs, this sleeping position is quite common.
Sleeping on the left side is recommended to pregnant women as it improves circulation of the heart circulation to the heart which is very beneficial for both mother and baby. People who suffer from medical conditions such as heartburn and acid reflux can also find this sleeping position to be very helpful.

Unfortunately, sleeping on the left side can place pressure on your stomach and lungs and result in arm-numbness.

Right-side sleeper

Many survey results show  that the majority of side sleepers tend to sleep on the right side. This allows  your spine to be in its natural position which makes this position very comfortable.

But, sleeping on the side has some flaws. Sleeping in this position puts pressure on  your liver. Studies have also shown that sleeping on the right side can lead to heartburn and   significant increases in overall acid clearance and reflux time.

a hugger sleeping position

The yearner

People who sleep in this position sleep on the side but with both arms placed straight in front of them. Many researchers consider this position to be healthy as the back and legs are straight which keep the spine straight and elongated. It supports the spine’s natural curve and reduces back and neck pain.

However if a person sleeps in this position for an extended period of time, they might experience  sore muscles in their arms.

a yearner sleeping position

The pillow hugger

Surprisingly, many side-sleepers also tend to hug a pillow while they’re sleeping. The researchers are not sure why, but they presume  that hugging a pillow while sleeping has a calming effect on a person.

On the other hand, the bad side of sleeping like this is that a person  might experience arm numbness.

The fetal position

This is a very popular sleeping position among adults.  It is recommended to pregnant women and the people suffering from poor blood circulation and snoring.

But one needs to be careful when sleeping like this. If  the person is curled up too tightly it could lead to back and neck problems.

an image of a fetal sleeping position

The freefaller

This is a position where the person is sleeping while lying on their stomach. Sleeping in this position can help those suffering from snoring and sleep apnea.
According to many studies this is the worst position to sleep in. It is uncomfortable for the back as it flattens the natural curve of the spine. That can cause lower back pain and  sleeping with the head turned to one side places a lot of stress on one’s neck.

an illustration of a freefaller sleeping position


The sleeping position is  crucial for a good night’s sleep. If you are not satisfied with the quality of your sleep and you would like to improve it, feel free to try any of these positions for a few nights and see if there’s any improvement. Alternatively, check these tips to sleep better. We wish you a good night sleep and sweet dreams.

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About the author

Alex Petrović
Sleep Consultant
A CPD certified Sleep Consultant with more than 2000 hours of research into all the different ways we can get a great night's sleep. As a former insomniac, I know how difficult life can be without a nightly recovery and I love that I get to share everything I've learned with you all. So hopefully we can all sleep soundly!
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