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stress management

Your pillow is just as important as your mattress when chasing that perfect night’s sleep.  If you have headaches, neck pains, shoulder pains, numbness, sneezing, snoring or wheezing when you wake up, your pillow may not be causing the problem, but it is likely contributing.   

It may be time for a new pillow for several reasons.  Here’s a really good one . . . it is probably crawling with fungi and buggies.  Yes, it’s true.  The journal “Allergy”, published in 2006, says that pillows as young as 18 months old contained up to 47 different kinds of fungi!  The researchers found about four to 16 fungi species per pillow, with synthetic pillows having more.  In that case, if you have allergies or asthma, your pillow is probably not helping matters.   Besides, it’s gross.  Consider tossing your old pillows and replacing them with a new fungus free or anti-microbial pillows.  While you’re at it, you might as well choose your pillows according to the most important criteria:  how you sleep.

At AllegroMedical.com we display about 70 bed pillows in our Pillows category.  To save you the trouble, I’ve separated them according to sleep type and specialty pillows.  I’m searching for the perfect pillow myself, so I’m hoping this endeavor will bear fruit for us all.  

 The perfect pillow will keep your head aligned right on top of your shoulders when lying down – not too far to either side, or up and down.  Therefore, the thickness of your pillow is important, depending on how you sleep.  Think you need the biggest, longest, fluffiest, most expensive pillow every made?  Au contraire.   In fact, pillows that are too dense, fluffy or wide merely create tension in your neck and shoulders.

Pillows by Sleep Type

Side Sleeper Pillows are lofty and thick so they keep your head staight by filling in the space between your head and shoulders.   Our most popular pillow, the Better Sleep Pillow was originally designed for side sleepers, but it also works great for back sleepers and stomach sleepers because of it’s mult-positional, multi-functional contoured design.   This is also true of our Sleepmatterzzz Dual-Valve Cervical Pillow, a super popular pillow with 5 star reviews.  See all Sleepmatterzzz pillows.

 

Back Sleeper pillows are designed so that when you are lying on your back your head stays neutral – perfectly aligned with your spine, sitting squarely on your shoulders.   We have several pillows that support both side and back sleepers by automatically adjusting as your sleeping position changes.  If you alternate between your back and your side (or your side and your stomach) be sure to get one that works in multiple positions.  

 

Stomach sleepers are just weird.  Okay, that’s what I tell my stomach sleeper boyfriend Todd anyway.  Seriously, though, experts say it is not the best way to sleep because if your bed is soft and you use a pillow, then you are not keeping your head neutral.  But if you must sleep on your stomach then please use a specially designed pillow, a very thin pillow or no pillow at all.  The Sleepmatterzzz Dual-Valve Cervical Pillow would be perfect for sleepers who switch from their side to their stomach. 

Specialty Pillows

Allergy-Free Pillows and Covers are a must for allergy sufferers.  We even have an Anti-Allergen Mattress Cover

 

Anti-Snore Pillows:  The Snore-No-More Anti Snoring Pillow is our most popular,  but from reading the reviews, it either works or it doesn’t work at all.  It was featured in Woman’s World Magazine as the “best snoring pillow” though, and it seems to help a lot of people.   See our Snoring Section for all of our anti-snoring products.

 

Bed Wedges and Body Positioners are ideal for helping your body maintain a comfortable body position while you sleep.  They are often used for post-surgery bedrest , footrest or blank support as well.  The leg/knee wedges and back wedges are especially popular.  You can put them between your knees for side sleeping, or under your knees, or behind your back.

 

Body Pillows are especially good for side sleepers and pregnant women who like to keep their spines aligned, and circulation going by sleeping with a pillow between their knees.

 

Cervical Pillows come in all shapes and sizes, but they are all designed to support the neck.   Cervial pillows help relieve pain associated with muscle tension, stress and strain by promoting proper alignment and support.   

 

Cooling Pillows/Covers are heaven for hot summer nights and hot flashes.   I have two Chillow Pillows that I use all Arizona summer long.  They are super popular and I highly recommend them.   

 

Water Pillows allow you to personalize your pillow by filling a water pouch inside the pillow for soft, medium or firm support.

You can’t tell what’s going to work until you sleep on it so try to get the one that fits the best with your sleep style.  In my case, I’ve kissed a lot of toads, but I will continue to seek out the perfect pillow.  Even punching and feeling it in a retail store doesn’t make much of a difference. 

See our new category, Beds,  and also read how to retrofit the rest of your bed in my blog Bed Check for Better Sleep.

At least we have a lot of products to choose from, right?  Happy shopping!

-v

The textbook definition of stress boils down to “if you’re alive, then you’re stressed”. So, if you say you’re not, then you’re either lying or dead.

Everyone experiences stress and responds to stress differently. How you handle it depending on your physical and mental health at the time. What totally stresses you out might not even faze the next guy.

So, how do you know if you have too much stress, or badly managed stress?

If any of the following situations sound familiar, and you experience them frequently, then you may be headed for some serious health problems.

  • You think you “function just fine” on 5 or 6 hours of sleep
  • You brain won’t shut off and you toss and turn all night
  • You get an overwhelming feeling of dread as you wake to face the day
  • You have frequent obstacle course dreams, treadmill dreams, repetitive dreams or worry dreams
  • Your shoulders and/or back are in knots, but you think “that’s normal”
  • Your face is pinched and your jaw is set and your eyes are squinting. Try something. Relax your face and see what happens. See? Ahhhh…
  • Your head feels like its going to burst open or pop off due to a massive headache or migraine
  • You can’t poop or you’re pooping all the time
  • You constantly worry about getting a horrible disease
  • You feel nauseous and you’re retching in the a.m. – every day, or just sometimes…
  • It seems you’re always sick, or getting sick, or just getting done being sick
  • You’re finding a lot of hair in the shower drain
  • You get zits
  • Your eyes or lips twitch
  • You don’t have the energy you used to, and you don’t know why
  • You break out in hives
  • Your hands shake. Are they shaking now?
  • You’re fidgety – tap, tap, tapping or bouncing or jiggling. Stop it!
  • You bite your nails
  • Your chest gets tight and it’s hard to breathe
  • Your throat gets small and it’s hard to swallow
  • You pick your lip or chew the inside of your cheek
  • You grind your teeth
  • You clear your throat a lot (phlegm stress)
  • You feel lost
  • You’re gaining weight but you’re not eating more than usual
  • You’re eating everything that’s not nailed down
  • You’re eating junk food or fast food
  • You’re not hungry at all and can’t imagine eating
  • You’re losing weight because you don’t have the time or energy or desire to eat
  • You decide your friends are no longer your friends
  • I love you. I hate you. Leave me alone. Don’t leave me.
  • You stop being a good friend/mother/wife/husband because you’re too busy
  • The blame game is the only game in town
  • You say things like, “I’m sorry I’m taking everything out on you”
  • You’re late for everything
  • You BURST OUT crying in the grocery store
  • You’re hyper-critical of the ones you love the most… and of everyone else
  • You say really hurtful and inappropriate things
  • You BURST OUT laughing at a funeral
  • You can’t stop yelling at your husband or your kids
  • You want to punch something
  • You throw a ping pong paddle at your friend while giving them the double bird, screaming “I hate you!”
  • You find the ice cream in the pantry the day after you unload the groceries
  • You leave your keys in the car…or the freezer
  • Simple math is hard math
  • You’re looking for your glasses and they’re on your head
  • You think everything would be better if you just have a drink… or 5
  • You smoke too much pot. Is that possible? Kidding…
  • You think one more little Valium couldn’t hurt
  • You don’t smoke but you want a cigarette anyway
  • You spend $1000 on a feather bed but you can’t pay your rent
  • You’re convinced you’re going to die a pauper
  • You’re clumsy – you trip over, run into, drop and spill things
  • You’re avoiding work or friends or events
  • You’re go, go, go all the time
  • Thoughts swirl around your head and you fixate on things
  • You not only sweat the small stuff but you also… um…sweat
  • You hide from the world in inappropriate places where you can “just be yourself”
  • You don’t take care of yourself because you’re too busy
  • You’re having health issues
  • You stress about stress
  • If some of these things sound just a little too much like you, or someone you love, then it’s time to take action to reduce the stress.

    We all experience short term stress once in a while, things like taking a test or giving a speech or trying something new – things that make your heart pound or your palms sweat. As soon as the event is over, though, the physical signs disappear quickly, usually before resulting in serious health consequences.

    Then, there are those guaranteed stressors like losing a job, getting married, having a baby, getting divorced, changing jobs, buying a house…. Again, these are usually manageable in the short term but you should definitely incorporate some stress relieving activities to get you through the rough spots.

    The real scary problem is your prolonged or long term stress. The constant daily pressures that you “just live with” can be the path to disease and even sudden death.

    Here are 15 Stress Tips that Could Save Your Life. Be sure to consult with your doctor as well.

    There are also some really great stress reducing products to help you stay on track. Here are Allegro’s 10 Most Popular Stress Relief Products.

    Another thing I highly recommend is monitoring your blood pressure at home. It’s super easy and takes, like, a minute.

    Hey, we care about you, so do the right thing and take care of yourself and the ones you love. Besides being your one-stop shop for medical supplies we can help you find products by medical condition, including stress. See All Stress Management Products.

    As always, we appreciate your business.

    These are all things that I made a priority a few years ago. I stick to them like glue. Since I started using these stress management techniques my outlook on life, my mood, my feelings of well-being and most importantly my health have improved drastically. I hope it can help you too.

    1. Exercise. Even a little bit of exercise relieves tension like nothing else. You don’t have to go to the gym or even do anything structured or super strenuous. Walk around the house, the neighborhood, up and down the stairs (or even 1 stair). Get a pedlar exerciser or some hand weights and use them while you’re watching TV. Get a yoga tape or DVD and make it the first thing you do every morning and the last thing you do every night. See your doctor first if you have health issues. See All Exercise Products

    2. Get out of the office. You’re not doing yourself, your customers or your boss any favors by working 10 hours a day. Besides, life’s too short.

    3. Go to bed in time to get 8 hours of sleep every night. Just do it.

    4. Take a vitamin with antioxidants. I also take Glucosamine with Chondroitin and MSM for my joints. If you have high blood sugar, consult your doctor before taking Glucosamine.

    5. Get certified to SCUBA dive and do it as often as possible. Just thinking about it brings my stress level down.

    6. Stop eating crap. Go to a nutritionist. Having a sound eating plan will help reduce your stress.

    7. Stop dieting. It’s so stressful. Your diet is “what you eat” not “what you do”. Cut the portions if you have to. Have a protein shake for breakfast. When you need some cake, take a bite or two, just not the whole slice. Your body will fight to keep the weight on if you’re stressed.

    8. Get regular massages and pedicures. Don’t think of it as a treat, but as a necessity.

    9. Don’t lose yourself to your husband/wife/kids/job. Force yourself to go out with the girls, or play an instrument, read books, take classes, get involved in a charity that you love.

    10. Learn to say “no”. Try it a few times and you’ll realize that the world doesn’t come to a screeching halt. People will respect you for it.

    11. Stop worrying about what other people think. You’d be surprised at how much you’ll relax when you realize that you don’t have to be perfect, or dress perfect, or have a spotless house.

    12. Have more sex.

    13. Relax as hard as you work as hard as you play. I used think balance was all about playing as hard as I worked. So wrong. You have to add ‘relax’ to the mix.

    14. Stop working when you’re on vacation. Leave your computer (or anything else you’re constantly typing stuff into) at home if you have to. Just put it down and walk away. Bliss.

    15. Do an honest inventory of the situations, events and people that stress you out. Decide whether they are energy givers or energy zappers. Eliminate or avoid the energy zappers.

    Don’t know if you’re stressed? Take the Stress Test!

    Here are Allegro’s 10 Most Popular Stress Relief Products.

    See All Stress Relief Products.

    Take care and as always, thanks for your business.

    -v

    1. Spa-N-A-Box Portable Spa
    2. ergoBead Hand Exerciser and Stress Ball
    3. Deluxe Handheld Shower Massager
    4. Yoga Starter Kit
    5. The Original Backnobber II See all Pressure Massagers
    6. Soothe-A-Ciser Pillow
    7. Cobblestone Mat
    8. Spine Worx Back Support Alignment System
    9. Stress Buster Ball
    10. Free Standing Kick Bag

    Don’t know if you’re stressed? Take the Stress Test!

    Shop by Medical Condition. See All Stress Relief Products

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