We spend around 1/3 of our lives sleeping. Unsurprisingly, many health issues stem from difficulties sleeping, but sleep position can impact wellness, too. Posture during the night both affects sleep quality, possibly disrupting rest, and places stress on different parts of the body. Some studies indicate that changing sleep positions can ease certain illnesses and conditions. Additionally, some postures could aggravate already-existing issues.


1. Fetal Position

By far, the most popular sleep position for adults is the fetal position. According to the National Sleep Foundation, around 41% prefer this posture. Sleeping on the side and slightly curled is ideal for pregnant women because it improves circulation and prevents the uterus from pressing against other organs. Notably, though, a person who curls too tightly while sleeping may restrict their breathing. People with arthritis may notice back and knee pain after sleeping in the fetal position.

sleeping fetal position Voyagerix / Getty Images


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