The right pillow forms an important basis for restful sleep and healthy development, especially for children. Here you can find out what really matters when choosing a children's pillow and which pillow suits your child best.
Table of Contents
- Sleep in children
- The perfect children's pillow
- Height, shape & size
- Material & degree of hardness
- Your child decides
1. Sleep in children
Good sleep is crucial for a child's healthy development. Especially in the ongoing phases of development or during acute growth spurts, it is important to protect the body from unhealthy sleeping positions at night in order to prevent misalignments or pain in the spine in childhood. In the first few years of life, it is best for children to lie flat on their backs in bed without a pillow or blanket so that the strain is relieved and the sensitive spine can develop healthily. From the age of 2 to 10, parents should choose a suitable pillow for their child and definitely include the child in the selection process.
Special children's pillows are usually tailored in height, firmness and size to the body size, the lower contact pressure and the comparatively narrow shoulder width of a child and can significantly support sleep at a young age. We will now clarify what exactly needs to be taken into account, in addition to the child's personal feelings, when choosing the perfect children's pillow in order to optimally promote physical development.
2. The perfect children's pillow
The pillow determines the position of the head during sleep and is responsible for ensuring that the cervical spine is well positioned at night. For a healthy and ergonomic sleeping position, the head and spine should form a straight line towards the pelvis, while the shoulders should ideally be at a right angle to the cervical spine. Physical development can be very different and change quickly, especially in children as they grow. Therefore, you should always observe whether the child can assume a comfortable sleeping position on its pillow and whether the pillow really feels comfortable.
#1 The height
An incorrect pillow height quickly leads to an unnatural head position, which causes tension, pain or breathing problems. How high your child's pillow should be depends particularly on the width of the shoulders, but also on the shape of the head and the curvature of the spine in the neck area. Children usually move more during sleep than adults and often change sleeping positions. It can therefore help to choose a pillow that keeps the spine straight, both when lying on your back and on your side, depending on the width of your shoulders.
When looking for the perfect pillow height, you can use these recommendations as a guide.
#2 The shape
Neutral ergonomic pillow shapes can support different sleeping positions and are therefore suitable for younger children who often change lying positions or use the pillow not only for sleeping, but also for cuddling or playing. For older children who already sleep more calmly and in a stable sleeping position, special ergonomic shapes, such as neck support pillow, can contribute to a particularly back-friendly sleeping position. Basically, the preference and personal feelings of your child decide here, no matter what age they are.
#3 The size
A pillow suitable for children should, on the one hand, provide enough contact surface for the head according to their body size in order to prevent the head from slipping or the neck from bending when changing position frequently during the night. On the other hand, it is advisable not to choose a pillow that is too large so that there is enough space to move freely in bed, for example. b Simply push the pillow away when changing to the prone position. Then the child can easily decide at night based on their own feelings which sleeping position feels best.
#4 The material
Children lose a lot of sweat or saliva at night, pay less attention to hygiene and usually use their pillows not only in bed, but also during the day when they nap on the couch, as a cuddly toy or as a cushion to sit on the floor. Parents should therefore pay attention to materials with good cleaning properties, high air permeability and the highest possible resistance to bacteria and mites. Pillows made of breathable, anti-allergic foam and pillowcases made of robust, absorbent fibers that can be washed at up to 60 degrees are particularly suitable here. Children can then be optimally protected from dust, dirt, mites and bacteria at night and ensure a hygienically clean sleep.
#5 The degree of hardness
Your child's pillow should generally be firm enough to support their head in a healthy position at night, but should still give a little so that there is no strong pressure on the child's face, head or neck. Pillows that are made of a more dimensionally stable material, such as foam, are also recommended. Allowing your head or face to sink too much while sleeping, as is often the case with soft down or feather pillows, can lead to breathing problems and increase the risk of suffocation and should of course be avoided.
3. Your child decides with
Ultimately, what matters is that the child can lie comfortably and softly at night and can adopt a healthy, ergonomic sleeping position. Children should always be included in the decision-making process and asked about their wishes and opinions. A new pillow should always be tested first and tried out for several nights. Just like for us adults, an unfamiliar sleeping position on a new pillow can feel uncomfortable for the first few nights or, conversely, may seem comfortable at first, but then lead to pain or tension after a few days. Due to the rapid growth in children, you should also check regularly whether the pillow still fits the child's body structure and current sleeping habits. With a suitable pillow, you can ensure a comfortable and, above all, healthy sleeping position and support the little ones' natural development in the best possible way.
You can find further information and simple tips on how you can support your child's sleep in this article.
Specially adapted children's pillows ensure a natural sleeping position and thus directly support good sleep and healthy development.
For a healthy and ergonomic sleeping position, the head and spine should form a straight line towards the pelvis, while the shoulders should ideally be at a right angle to the cervical spine.
Children's pillows should be constantly adjusted to the child's body structure, especially in terms of height, shape and size, in order to enable a natural sleeping position.
Sufficiently supportive but not too hard pillows made of elastic, anti-allergic foam and absorbent, easy-to-clean pillowcases are best suited for use with children.
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