Better care starts with safety and comfort.

How to Choose the Best Pillows for Your Senior Living Facility

By Greg Snoddy, Vice President, Healthcare Sales - Senior Living
October 2016


Supplying the right bed pillows is not only comforting for residents; it plays a key role in supporting their head, neck, shoulders, hips, and spine. With so many pillow options available, it can be difficult to determine which option is the best for your senior living facility.

Below are three tips for choosing the best pillows for your residents:

  1. Choose a pillow with the optimal pillow height recommended for most individuals.
  2. When upright, our necks curve forward to support the weight of our heads. When laying down to rest, it’s important to maintain this curve to prevent neck and shoulder muscle strain, obstructed breathing due to narrowing of the air pipe, and sometimes even snoring. This holds true for individuals who sleep on their backs or in sideways positions. For most individuals (putting personal preferences aside for a moment) one’s pillow should retain a height of 4 to 6 inches to properly support the head, neck and shoulders when lying on the back.

    Choosing the best pillows for your residents

  3. Consider the multiple ways the pillows are likely to be used.
  4. For some residents, the position of their bodies while in their beds is very important to their ability to receive appropriate care. In addition to supporting the head and shoulders, pillows are a quick and cost-efficient way to customize sleeping surfaces and alleviate or prevent many common forms of spinal, hip, leg and joint discomfort otherwise experienced while lying down. Depending on each resident’s unique shape, curves, and sleeping position, strategically placed pillows may help relieve pressure points in the body and create a safer and more comfortable sleep environment.

    Strategically placed pillows help relieve pressure pointsPillows expand for resident comfort

  5. Select pillow fillings capable of maintaining the appropriate level of support long-term.
  6. Different pillow fillings vary in the level of support they offer. For example, most down or feather pillows offer minimal structural support. One may need to use multiple feather or down pillows to create the optimal pillow height required to properly align one’s body. For a senior living facility, it is more efficient to choose pillows filled with firmer materials that resist wear, crumbling, and breakdown.

Although each resident will arrive with their own personal preferences, supplying them with a versatile pillow that can provide comfortable, lasting support is a great way to welcome them to your senior living facility.

The Pillow Factory, a division of Encompass Group, LLC, is dedicated to creating innovative, quality, cost effective products. As a recognized leader in sleep-care products, we offer extensive product lines that include both reusable and disposable pillow solutions to meet virtually any need. Please contact us at 1-800-222-9319 for additional information on how The Pillow Factory can help you develop anything your senior living facility is considering.


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