Manufacturers and retailers alike speak very highly of memory foam pillow benefits for apnea sufferers -- as do many doctors. Memory beds also appear to help reduce snoring.
But what do apnea sufferers who actually sleep on these surfaces think? Does memory foam bedding really help?
A comfortable pillow that properly supports the neck and head is extremely important, especially since side-sleeping is recommended with a sleep condition like apnea. But there are two types of memory pillows.
Neck pillows -- also known as cervical or contour pillows -- are designed to cradle the neck and head and provide proper spine support. You can easily tell memory neck pillows apart by their double-curve, valley-shape design.
Visco foam pillows also come in traditional shapes. Whichever the shape, good quality foam pilows soften at body temperature and closely contour to your neck and head to improve comfort and support. But is this really enough to provide apnea relief?
Many apnea sufferers agree that contour neck pillows are better for side sleeping than the traditionally shaped ones because of their ergonomic design and their slightly elevated top. Both types, however, can pose problems for those using CPAP or similar machines and masks.
One of the most common apnea-related complaints about these pillows is that they are too firm and push the mask against the face causing headaches and making the nose sore. They may also cause the mask to shift during sleep leading to leaks.
Of the two, memory contour pillows are less likely to cause mask movement than the traditionally-shaped ones are, but more likely to do so than really soft, traditional pilows. A viscoelastic foam pillow that doesn't soften enough can have several causes:
Another common problem with some memory pillows is lack of tall, firm edge over which you can suspend the mask when side or tummy sleeping. The better the quality and the higher the density of the foam, the firmer should the edge of the pillow feel.
Although a nuisance to many apnea sufferers, some memory foam pillow-associated problems may have solutions:
Before deciding on this type of pillow, know that there is only one proven benefit of memory foam. Whether it's enough to ensure a comfortable sleep, only you can tell.
A Critical Eye On The Latest Mattress Technologies
The most commonly reported problem consumers have with memory foam mattresses is that they sleep hotter when compared to conventional sleeping surfaces.
But sleeping conditions are influenced by environment temperature, the material's heat sensitivity and your own body heat.
How can you check if your purchase as good as a authentic Tempurpedic bed? You can try the wine glass test, the egg test, or the fridge test.