“Why do I sleep better in a recliner than a bed?” seems to pop up more regularly nowadays on Google search and different forums. Many who find it difficult to fall asleep choose to sleep on a recliner instead of a traditional bed.

Even doctors recommend their patients to get a suitable recliner for a better night’s sleep. What are the benefits of the recliner? Does it cause any issues?

In this article, we will show you all the pros and cons of sleeping in a recliner so that you can get how to sleep in your chair correctly and comfortably.

Why Does Your Recliner Make You Sleep Better?

There are many reasons you can sleep better in a recliner rather than in a conventional bed.

For instance, it can support spinal stenosis, prevent heartburn, and relieve osteoarthritis, helping those with these diseases to have better sleep.

Also, it appears to be a great aid for pregnant women to rest in an inclined position, making them fall asleep easier.

Take a look below to dive into the benefits of this chair.

sleeping with legs elevated in a recliner

Benefits of Sleeping in a Recliner

1. Spinal Stenosis Support

Spinal stenosis has been among the most popular occurrences in many people as they age. It is often due to back stiffness or lower back pain.

And this health condition might be exacerbated by a conventional bed. The pressure put on your back from lying horizontally and the mattress’ springs are probably the outright reason for spinal stenosis.

Meanwhile, a comfortable recliner will help you to alleviate the pressure. As you don’t lay on your back directly, the pressure is distributed through your whole body.

Accordingly, it can reduce or solve your lower back pain completely so that you can sleep more soundly.

2. Heartburn Prevention

Another benefit is to prevent heartburn. This condition is attributable to your diet. It happens when your stomach acid rises to your esophagus. And the situation can become worse if you lay down.

A horizontal sleeping position will let the acid in your stomach reverse to your throat easily, making the heartburn more severe and last longer.

Nevertheless, sleeping in your recliner is another story. This inclined position can hinder the stomach acid from moving up into your esophagus.

Accordingly, it helps alleviate your heartburn and can prevent it from occurring.

3. Osteoarthritis Relief

Osteoarthritis is another health problem that can be supported by sleeping in a recliner. This condition has widely affected a majority of agers.

It occurs when the cartilage surrounding joints gets weaker, leading to joint inflammation. And the issue can aggravate if you lay flat in a conventional bed.

On the other hand, your recliner can help you relieve this inflammation and pain as it divides your weight into different areas, reducing inflammation and swelling.

benefits of sleeping with legs elevated

4. Sleep Apnea and Snoring Prevention

Sleeping in your recliner can help with both snoring and sleep apnea. These disorders are caused when your airways are blocked. Laying completely flat on your back can worsen the conditions as your weight pushes down on the airway and cause it to close up.

When you are sleeping with legs elevated, the inclined position helps to reduce the pressure of your weight on your throat and nose.

Accordingly, you can alleviate the effect of your sleep apnea and the amount of snoring.

5. Pregnant Women Aid

It’s common for pregnant women to find it hard to fall asleep. Some can experience a growth in discomfort and back pain from their unborn child’s weight.

Thus, they cannot sleep well in a traditional bed. In this case, sleeping in a recliner might be a relief for them. A quality recliner can help pregnant women rest in an inclined position that is beneficial and compatible with their changing bodies.

6. Back Surgery Support

Sleeping in a recliner might be comfortable in case you find it hard to fall asleep after back surgery. Sleeping sitting up in a reclined position causes less pressure to your back than sitting in an upright position.

If you have back pain, you might want your chair to provide adequate support for your back. Thus, you are not sleeping with a curved spine, causing more pressure on the irritated area.

Side Effects of Sleeping in a Recliner

That said, there are also some cons to sleeping in your recliner. Most of them occur when you sleep in it too often.

1. Insufficient Blood Flow

If you sleep in your recliner very regularly, you can deal with blood flow problems. As your legs are lower than your heart, your body can have difficulty providing blood to your whole body.

2. Stiff Joints

Your recliner can shift your gravity center, causing stiff joints, especially in your knees. You can find it slightly difficult to leave your recliner sofa even when you want to wake up.

3. Shallow Sleep

When falling asleep in your recliner is easy, keeping that sleep appears to be challenging. As you cannot turn and twist your position, you are unlikely to get into a deep sleep.

Certainly, if you don’t move much when sleeping, this issue is not relevant.

3. Deep Vein Thrombosis

Getting your joints bent for hours every night might increase your chances of increasing deep vein thrombosis.

This condition is a life-threatening blood clot in your deep veins. It often happens in your legs and other parts of your body. Wearing compression socks might help you avoid developing this health issue.

sleeping in recliner while pregnant

Is It Ok to Sleep in a Recliner Every Night?

It is possible. Some doctors suggest those with health conditions sleep in their recliners.

If you want to elevate your upper body due to sleep apnea, heartburn, or back pain, a comfortable recliner can bring a good night’s sleep for you. Pregnant women occasionally can get better sleep with the support of a recliner.

How to Sleep in a Recliner Properly

To help you get the right inclined position when sleeping in your recliner, we have compiled several important elements to follow.

  • If your recliner is made with leather upholstery, you will want to put a top sheet down. Accordingly, your skin touches the sheet rather than the leather, so you can avoid sweating when sleeping.
  • Grab a blanket and a pillow if the headrest of your chair doesn’t provide enough padding for you. Put them within reach of the chair’s arms.
  • Turn off all the lights before sitting in your recliner, except for the lamp helping you reach the chair.
  • If you have slept in manual recliners, remember to add some extra pillows behind your knees and your neck. You mightn’t need them, yet manual chairs typically offer three recline positions.
Whether you want to tweak to get comfortable, you want to do it through strategically-put pillows.
  • If you are sleeping in a power recliner, take a seat and use the controls to adjust the recline angle to meet your demands in advance.
  • Grab your blanket and pillow, turn off the light and sleep soundly!
That is how to sleep in a recliner properly.

Besides, we have some small notes for pregnant women and those with back pain when sleeping in a recliner:

  • If you are pregnant, it is recommended to sleep on your left side, reducing the pressure on your liver. Thus, you need to adjust the recline angle to help you get the most comfortable sleeping position.
  • If you have back pain, remember to elevate your feet higher than your heart when sleeping. It will help place you in a zero-gravity position, putting no pressure on your back.

Final Thoughts

So you have gone through our article to know the answer. In short, sleeping in your recliner works for you if you have some health issues like sleep apnea, osteoarthritis, and snoring.

It helps you get better sleep during the night. That said, don’t abuse the use of this chair as it can lead to severe conditions such as deep vein thrombosis and insufficient blood flow.

Moreover, this chair is a good idea for pregnant women to get a better night’s sleep, ensuring their health and the growth of the babies.

As a final note, choose the right seat size for optimal comfort. If you are tall and heavy, a big and wide recliner will be the wise choice.

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