The Best Migraine Pillows for 2021 (Awareness, Prevention & Tips)

Words by Leslie Lidot
May 17, 2021
8 Minute Read
8 Minute Read
Words by Leslie Lidot
May 17, 2021

On a scale of 1 to 10, migraine attacks begin with severe stiffness in the neck. The tension causes aches and pains that radiate down into the shoulders and back and up into the skull. Once the onset is in full motion, the pain develops into an acute sensitivity that results in even the slightest touch like fire against the head. 

Migraines also induce sleeplessness. While doctors treat serious migraines, you can get some relief with a quality pillow. The best pillows for migraines are usually made of a soft yet firm memory foam and are molded to realign your spine and reduce the neck and back pain that usually generates migraines.

Quality pillows can be an investment, which is why we gathered a list to get you covered on which migraine pillows are highly recommended for people living with constant headaches.

1. The Best Overall Pillow for Migraines - ComfyCentre Memory Foam Pillow

migraine pillow

Among the Top 5 Pillow for Migraines that we've listed, ComfyCentre's Memory Foam Pillow is getting our highest priority. This full package, breathable memory foam pillow provides air circulation to keep you dry and cool throughout the night. It features an ergonomic design that helps support the neck, head, shoulder, and back. Not to mention, this migraine pillow relieves neck pain and reduces stress that could trigger migraines.

ComfyCentre is also keen when it comes to quality. This orthopedic migraine pillow doesn't lose its shape, allowing higher density and better quality than regular pillows.

Remember that discomfort may develop for the correct position in two weeks. So you may want to try adjusting your position.

2. The Runner Up for Best Pillow for Migraines - Nature's Guest Cervical Support Pillow

Nature's Guest Cervical Pillow comes with premium quality hypoallergenic materials that provide unique and ideal support for your neck and back throughout the night. It's also made of revolutionary microfiber that delivers that additional softness and flexibility. The diamond-shape design ensures solid support for back and side sleepers despite moving between positions.

This contoured migraine pillow provides the right support for your spine that many orthopedic specialists recommended. Nature's Guest Cervical Pillow is one of the best orthopedic pillows for migraines and neck pain in the market.

3. The Best Buckwheat Pillow for Migraines - Beans72 Organic Buckwheat Pillow

For a slightly more breathable pillow, this buckwheat hull pillow from Beans72 is designed to accommodate your neck for better support as you sleep. This migraine pillow is filled with buckwheat, a seed-like grain with a hull popularly used as pillow filling in Japan for years.

A hull buckwheat pillow allows more air to flow throughout the cushion than normal pillows, meaning you're less likely to overheat while sleeping. Hence, your migraine and neck pain may lessen.

4. The Best Adjustable Pillow for Migraines - Mediflow Water Pillow

migraine pillow

This migraine water pillow from Mediflow is our best selection when it comes to cooling pillows. The company uses water-based technology and is clinically proven by Johns Hopkins University. It reduces neck pain and allows you to sleep better. The migraine pillow is filled with water, which you can adjust the firm level by adding or removing water.

The water inside Mediflow's Water Pillow constantly goes with the head, so there's no need for adjustments. The water pouch inside the pad is fully sealed and coated by a resilient polyester fiber layer. The cotton shell is also 100% hypoallergenic and soft. This migraine pillow is ideal for side, back, or stomach sleepers.

5. The Best Contoured Pillow for Migraines - Polar Sleep Contoured Neck & Cervical Pillow

migraine pillow

With a migraine often comes neck pain, and that's how Polar Sleep's support pillow comes in. Unlike most memory foam pillows; this migraine pillow is designed to provide targeted neck support through its curved design. It also keeps your head in position and your spine aligned as you sleep.

If you have neck or shoulder pain, make sure your posture is as aligned as possible. If you're looking for the best pillow to help you achieve that, this pillow can do the job. As you rest your head in the curved middle part of the pillow, your shoulders sense the firm memory foam support from the rest of the pillow. It brings an overall comfort to the affected areas of the migraine. This migraine pillow also offers temperature-regulating memory foam, so you won't feel the need to toss and turn so much.

6. The Best Gel Cooling Pillow for Migraines - Classic Brands Cooling Gel Pillow

migraine pillow

Applying cool pressure is one of the most typical and effective migraine remedies, but this cooling pillow from Classic Brands can bring instant relief if you have a migraine. This migraine pillow promotes constant temperature regulation. The cooling surface comes with a textured gel layer that ensures body heat doesn't accumulate. It's a great alternative for cold, wet washcloths that you usually apply to relieve migraines. Additionally, if you opt to switch from the cooling effect, you can flip the other side of the pillow, as the cooling gel only comes on one side.

The pillow's hypoallergenic cover guarantees the pillow stays hygienic and can be cleaned as needed. This cooling gel pillow is one of the best pillows for all sleeping positions as it comes in a medium-firm design.

What's the best way to sleep with a migraine?

Sleeping with migraines can seem impossible, especially if it's severe that you think of anything but the pulsating pain. There are a few ways to make sleeping more comfortable when you've got a migraine, such as:

  • Make your room pitch dark. If the light from a lamp strains your eyes or makes resting in the room unbearable, maybe it's time to go lay down in your bed and switch off the lights. Another usual symptom of a migraine is noise sensitivity, so make sure you rest in a quiet, calm space.
  • Get enough fluids. Taking care of your body feels unfeasible when you have a massive headache. Drinking a glass of water or a Gatorade bottle when you have a migraine is an easy step to ensure you're hydrated.
  • Listen to your body. A migraine could be a sign of a deficiency in your body. If you're already keeping up with your body, then you'll probably be able to recognize what type of food you need to lessen the pain. Alcohol, caffeinated beverages, certain fruits, and pizza are known to trigger migraines. However, everyone's body is different. Skipping meals can also lead to migraines for some, so make sure you have a decent meal schedule to avoid headaches.
  • Take deep breaths. Concentrating your mind on something other than the pain is a solution to falling and staying asleep with a severe migraine. A common breathing technique called the "4-7-8 method" centers the breath and reduces your heart rate. As you breathe in for four counts, hold your breath for seven and release it for eight. This exercise allows a calmer headspace as well.

How can a migraine pillow help alleviate migraine triggers?

Migraines may trigger in three ways: smell, sleep, and back or neck pain. When you sleep, be mindful of your sleep position and incorporate a supportive pillow while you rest. If not, the strain will likely be placed on your head and neck, resulting in severe pain in the head, face, temples, forehead, and even behind the eyes. The nerves in those areas being irritated can result in a migraine.

Pillows especially made for migraines can accommodate you with the right support for your head and neck needed while you sleep. The right pillow will provide you with a healthy sleeping posture aligned from your knees and hips through the spine to the chest, shoulders, head, and neck. With the right migraine pillow, you can lessen the likelihood of waking up with migraines.

What's the best way to sleep with a migraine?

As soon as the migraine strikes, all we could think of is the excruciating pain we feel in our heads. A proper migraine pillow can help alleviate the pain that comes with it, such as headaches. Ideally, people with migraines should look for a pillow with cooling properties and memory foam support.

Whether you endure migraines chronically or only experience a headache every once in a while, it's important to take them seriously. Migraines could be a sign of a different, serious health problem, so make sure to keep track of when you experience them and keep your doctor notified. Meanwhile, being prepared can ease or even prevent a migraine from reaching its peak severity.

What are the main causes of migraines?

One of the best ways to get rid of a migraine is to stop one before it even starts. To prevent a migraine from inflaming, you have to identify the causes and common triggers. That way, you can make specific lifestyle adjustments that might help you get rid of migraines in the first place.

The most likely cause of migraines is genes.

Although not fully understood, researchers consider that some people are more vulnerable to migraines due to genetics. Researchers are in the early stages of identifying which genes contribute to migraine susceptibility, but there are possibly hundreds, says Wade Cooper, DO, director of the University of Michigan's Headache and Neuropathic Pain Clinic in Ann Arbor.

Foods also trigger migraines such as aged cheeses, alcohol (particularly red wine), smoked meats (bacon, pepperoni), caffeine, certain spices, artificial sweeteners (such as aspartame), chocolate, salty or processed foods, and MSG.

How to prevent a migraine before it starts?

As mentioned above, some of the triggers are unavoidable (gasping someone's fragrance, responding to a change in the weather), but most of them are "modifiable." For instance, you can adjust your diet, consume regular meals every few hours, go to bed earlier, incorporate simple tasks such as sleeping and getting comfortable in bed, and lastly, manage your stress better by meditating or exercising. These simple steps can help alleviate or even prevent migraines from developing.

FAQs

  • Do memory foam pillows cause headaches?

Memory foam contains chemicals that help increase the density and viscosity of the cushion. Some of these chemicals linked with the symptoms include respiratory problems and headaches.

  • How do I sleep with a headache?

Choosing the right migraine pillow always keeps your neck and head in a neutral position for a better night's sleep. Avoid sleeping in a cold room as it worsens head and neck tension, triggering a headache.

  • Can soft pillows cause headaches?

If the pillow is too firm or too soft, it cannot properly support your head and neck. A good quality migraine pillow should fit your head, neck, back, and shoulders contours so it relieves the pressure and tightness that can lead to headaches.

Conclusion

You don't have to experience migraines all your life. Get relief with the use of the right pillows for migraine. Most of the migraine pillows mentioned above come in various shapes and added support to alleviate pain.

Lastly, we hope you find this article about migraine awareness and prevention worthwhile and useful, as well as the recommendations we've provided about the best pillows for migraines. Remember that a properly restful night of sleep also allows the body and brain to respond to pain in a more restrained way.

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