- Updated on July 31, 2019
By Dr. Artour Rakhimov, Alternative Health Educator and Author
Press Release; 22 September 2010
Media Contact: Artour Rakhimov, PhD
Phone Number: 1-(323)-843-2826
Address: 1666 Concession Road 2, Palgrave, L0N 1P0 Ontario Canada
E-mail: “artour”, then “@”, and then “normalbreathing.com”
Summary. World’s leading healthcare websites and articles suggest that sleeping on one’s back is the best sleep position for health, while medical researchers have found that supine sleep is worst and one of the key factors that contributes to millions of deaths every year.
What are the best sleeping positions? Several World Wide Web searchers using Google, Yahoo, and Bing produced the following results. Up to 90% of popular websites and articles written by medical professionals that belong to largest world’s healthcare providers suggest that sleeping on one’s back (or supine sleep) is the optimum or ideal posture for sleep without quoting any specific medical references (zero evidence).
What are the scientific findings? Over 20 published medical research studies were devoted to studying the effects of sleeping positions on health and symptoms in different groups of people. It was found that sleeping on one’s back was the WORST sleeping posture for: – asthma; – asthma and allergies; – nocturnal asthma; – bruxism and clenching episodes; – chronic respiratory insufficiency; – sleep apnea; – coughing attacks; – health of pregnant women; – back pain in pregnancy; – sleep paralysis and terrifying hallucinations; – irregular or periodic breathing; – pulmonary tuberculosis; – snoring, – health of geriatric inpatients; – hypopnea and apneas; – heart failure with sleep apnea; and – stroke in elderly patients.
There are no medical publications that found any advantages of supine sleep for adults with any health concern or chronic disorder.
Authors of four published research articles found the lowest measured blood oxygenation for sleeping on one’s back in comparison with any other sleep posture. Meanwhile, low body oxygenation is the critical factor that worsens any chronic disorder and undermines general health and wellbeing.
Furthermore, it is a known scientific fact that severely sick people have the highest mortality rates and most pronounced symptoms during sleep or the early morning hours (from about 4 to 7 am). This is true, according to published medical studies, for coronary spasms, sudden cardiac arrest, cerebral ischemia and stroke, diabetes, COPD, inflammatory disorders, epilepsy seizures, asthma and morning sickness.
Hence, sleep is a deadly poison for the severely sick; and early morning hours are the times of lowest oxygenation and worst health for up to 80% of healthy people too. For medical references and quotes related to these effects, search the web or visit this page: Sleep heavy breathing effect.
Regardless of the name of the disease and state of the patient, deep breathing (or hyperventilation) causes critically low cell oxygenation due to CO2 deficiency and that can ultimately lead to heart, brain, respiratory or multiple organ failures. (Note that over 95% of modern man believe in deep breathing myth, while there are no any medical studies that found any benefits of deep automatic breathing.)
What are the sleep-related causes of deep unconscious breathing during sleep? Physiologically, there are 2 drastic lifestyle changes that directly relate to breathing during sleep: mouth breathing and supine sleep (when sleeping on one’s back our breathing muscles are not restricted and this intensifies ventilation). These are some of the main immediate causes of millions of deaths every year in the chronically ill people.
Hence, modern internet healthcare “advice” (“sleep on your back!”) contribute to millions of deaths every year, while medical hospitals and healthcare providers continue to ignore the impact of these lifestyle risk factors (oral breathing and supine sleep) that have simple practical solutions: search the web for PDF manuals “How to prevent sleeping on one’s back” and “How to stop mouth breathing”
Best sleeping positions must be selected based on easier and slower breathing (i.e., closer to normal or ideal breathing) and greatest body oxygenation results. Statistical analysis has revealed that sitting position is the ideal sleeping option followed by prone (lying with the chest down) and left side sleep. A special stress-free breath holding time test (done after usual exhalation) is the way to choose best personal sleeping positions for those people who are not certain about the applicability of these findings.
Dr. Artour Rakhimov is a writer and Buteyko practitioner in Toronto.