Sleep is an integral part of maintaining physical health. A healthy sleep pattern helps regulate the immune system, fight inflammation, and promote healing. 
Part of having healthy sleep is dependent on how you sleep. Several studies have shown how the different sleeping positions affect the body. Each sleep position has its pros and cons. Some sleep positions are better for specific health issues, but not others. It varies from person to person.
Sleeping on your back is helpful for those suffering from lower back pain. Back sleeping alleviates pressure on the lower back and releases tension in the spine. However, if you suffer from neck pain, sleeping on your back can worsen it.  Pregnant women are advised not to sleep on their backs after the 28-week mark because it puts pressure on the inferior vena cava. This can lead to stillbirth due to the lack of blood flow. 
If you are someone who snores, sleeping on your side can help with partial obstruction. Another common breathing issue is sleep apnea, caused by a restricted airway. With sleep apnea, the airway gets blocked, leading to infrequent breathing. Side sleeping assists in opening up the airway. 
People with heartburn need to be careful with side sleeping. Heartburn can worsen if you are someone who tosses and turns in your sleep. Sleeping on your right side can make the burning sensation worse. Sleeping on your left side, however, can ease that pain. 
Side sleeping is the best position for pregnant women. This position is the most comfortable for the mother and fetus. It is best to sleep with pillows under their legs, supporting the back and stomach, for the best outcomes and most comfortable sleep. 
Stomach sleeping puts more pressure on the shoulders and can lead to shoulder pain upon waking.  This position is known to be comfortable when falling asleep but can lead to soreness in the arms and put pressure on the spine.
A popular misconception about stomach sleeping is that it is dangerous during pregnancy. Sleeping on your stomach is okay before 28 weeks. However, stomach sleeping can become uncomfortable very quickly as the fetus grows. 
Most people have a favorite position in which to fall asleep. Each position is acceptable, but there are always risks in how you sleep. It is essential to pay attention to your body. If you are suffering from pain during sleep, change the position in which you fall asleep. It is also important to sleep with pillows. Play around with the number of pillows and where you place them. Utilizing pillows helps with healthy sleep.
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 Choosing the best sleep position. Johns Hopkins Medicine. https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/wellness-and-prevention/choosing-the-best-sleep-position. Published August 8, 2021. Accessed September 14, 2022.
 Holdaway LA, Hegmann KT, Thiese MS, Kapellusch J. Is sleep position associated with glenohumeral shoulder pain and rotator cuff tendinopathy: a cross-sectional study. BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2018;19(1):408. Published 2018 Nov 23. doi:10.1186/s12891-018-2319-9 [Times cited=2] [Journal impact factor=3.021]
 National Guideline Alliance (UK). Maternal sleep position during pregnancy: Antenatal care. London: National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE); August 2021