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Best Pillow For Acid Reflux

Acid reflux is an uncomfortable digestive disease that can unfortunately flare up at any time if you’re prone to its symptoms, such as heartburn. In most situations, you may be able to get it under control and avoid the worst of the discomfort, but symptoms often seem to strike at night when you’re trying to get comfortable in bed. This is due to how and why acid reflux occurs in the first place, and laying down is actually the worst position you can put yourself in.

How can you expect to get any rest when acid reflux rears its ugly head? Luckily, you can adjust your sleep position to help alleviate the worst of this condition and give yourself a more restful, uninterrupted night’s sleep. The best pillows for acid reflux are wedge pillows, and the top five we’ve highlighted have been a favorite among those who suffer from this disease, whether it be chronic or sporadic. Our best-rated wedge pillows can be found below, all of which can be helpful for other issues such as snoring, where they can help to keep airways open. Although there are many different wedge pillows offered in the current market, these are considered some of the top-rated based on consumer reviews and reports.

Rank Product Highlights Warranty
#1 milliard-bed-wedge-pillow-memory-foam-top

Milliard Bed Wedge Pillow with Memory Foam Top

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  • Most affordable on our list
  • Greatly reduces acid reflux
  • Great for injury recovery
N/A
#2

FitPlus Premium Wedge Pillow

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  • Reduces pressure points
  • Can be used for leg elevation as well
  • Supportive of CPAP machines
30 day warehouse returns
#3

Bed Wedge Pillow by Xtra-Comfort

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  • Adjustable loft
  • Is comforting and contours the body well
  • Soft, plush surface
Lifetime
#4

Medslant BIG Acid Reflux Wedge Pillow

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  • Great for combination sleepers
  • Size fits a larger amount of personal comfort needs
  • Helps with acid reflux
30 day distributor returns
#5

Drive Medical Folding Bed Wedge

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  • Has many uses
  • Very supportive
  • Surprising quality for cost
30 day distributor returns

Best Pillows for Acid Reflux

1. Editor’s Choice – Milliard Bed Wedge Pillow with Memory Foam Top

milliard-bed-wedge-pillow-memory-foam-top

SPECS

  • Filling: Memory foam, polyurethane foam
  • Loft: 7 inches
  • Comfort Positions: Back and side
  • Warranty: N/A

The Milliard Bed Wedge Pillow was created from 2 solid wedge layers to provide a soft, conforming surface to better accommodate side sleepers as well as back sleepers. This provides the ability to allow the head and neck to sink into the surface for spinal alignment, all while allowing the body to be elevated at a 30 degree angle to help alleviate heartburn symptoms, snoring and post nasal drip – just to name a few.

The plush bamboo casing provides excellent airflow, as well as a comforting surface. The pillow can also be used in other positions, such as placing it upright for back support, under the knees for lower back and leg support. This position can help improve blood circulation, as well as a reduction in pressure points to promote body healing. A hybrid of memory foam and polyurethane foam, this wedge pillow is specifically made for those who suffer from acid reflux, neck and back pain, snoring and other respiratory issues. In addition to being by far the most affordable of our choices, it’s clear to see why this pillow is our editor’s pick!

Pros

  • Most affordable on our list
  • Greatly reduces acid reflux
  • Great for injury recovery

Cons

  • Offgassing may be present, as is common with memory foam

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2. Best for Back Sleepers – FitPlus Premium Wedge Pillow

SPECS

  • Filling: Memory foam/polyurethane foam layers
  • Loft: 7.5 inches
  • Comfort Positions: Back and side
  • Warranty: 30 day warehouse returns

The doctor-recommended FitPlus Premium Wedge Pillow has a thick 1.5 inch memory foam top with a firm underlying foam wedge to avoid compression and keep you in position through the night. Its gentle contouring helps support both back and side sleepers, and cradles the head and neck to provide cervical alignment as it keeps your head at approximately 7.5 inches in height.

The soft washable cover is another great bonus. Like similar designs, it works well for various sleeping positions and can particularly aid with back support. It can also help alleviate various ailments such as snoring, sleep apnea and respiratory issues.

Pros

  • Reduces pressure points
  • Can be used for leg elevation as well
  • Supportive of CPAP machines

Cons

  • High slope
  • Firm
  • Cover zipper not very user-friendly

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3. Best for Traveling – Bed Wedge Pillow by Xtra-Comfort

SPECS

  • Filling: Memory foam
  • Loft: Up to 12 inches
  • Comfort Positions: Back and side
  • Warranty: Lifetime

The Bed Wedge Pillow by Xtra-Comfort is a folding pillow that provides multiple incline uses. Made from a dense memory foam, it’s a firmer feel and is considered a 3-in-1 design for its incline control, as well as having multiple uses for the back and body. The pillow’s loft can be adjusted to up to 12 inches, providing one of the highest slopes offered in a wedge pillow.

The soft, microplush cover is removable for washing and is snugly secured with a zipper. A handle on the cover is durably sewn on, making it perfect for travel and easy storage. This is also helpful due to the size of the pillow, as it’s a larger model than many of its competitors in the current market.

Pros

  • Adjustable loft
  • Is comforting and contours the body well
  • Soft, plush surface

Cons

  • Very firm
  • Takes time to get used to

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4. Best for Combination Sleepers – Medslant BIG Acid Reflux Wedge Pillow

SPECS

  • Filling: Soy/polyurethane foam
  • Loft: ~7 inches
  • Comfort Positions: All
  • Warranty: 30 day distributor returns

The Medslant Acid Reflux Wedge Pillow was created especially for acid reflux sufferers in order to provide the best sleep possible. The elongated slope is longer than many other wedge pillows to provide a more gradual rise. At a full 28 inches wide, it’s also half as wide as a queen bed, allowing you to move about and spread out if needed. Made from a soy, poly foam, it acts as a conforming memory foam pillow but has firm underlying comfort with little offgassing.

The microfiber cover is easy to remove and put back on, allowing for free airflow through the case and around the pillow to provide a cooler night’s rest. The overall size of the wedge allows for better adjustability depending on your sleeping position, making it a versatile pillow for a wide variety of people.

Pros

  • Great for combination sleepers
  • Size fits a larger amount of personal comfort needs
  • Helps with acid reflux

Cons

  • Very firm
  • Takes time to get used to
  • May create an impression

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5. Best for Multiple Uses – Drive Medical Folding Bed Wedge

SPECS

  • Filling: Polyurethane foam
  • Loft: Choice of 7 to 12 inches
  • Comfort Positions: Back and side
  • Warranty: 30 day distributor returns

Available in multiple sizes, the Drive Medical Folding Bed Wedge is offered in a 7 to 12 inch height to fit your needs and body type. Made predominantly for back sleepers, this wedge can also fold for storage or for supporting other parts of the body. The firm poly foam allows for a supportive rest and helps hold the back in its correct spinal alignment.

The soft cotton casing can be removed for washing and is easy to take off with the durable zipper. The pillow is a spacious 23 inches wide, providing ample room and perfect for those who toss and turn at night needing a lot of space around them.

Pros

  • Has many uses
  • Very supportive
  • Surprising quality for cost

Cons

  • Hard to pick the best size
  • Very firm

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What is Acid Reflux?

That burning pain you may be feeling located in the lower chest area is called acid reflux, but is also commonly known as indigestion or pyrosis, and can cause symptoms such as heartburn. This feeling most often occurs after eating when some of the stomach acid flows back up into the oesophagus.

The burning feeling is caused by the acid irritating the lining of the oesophagus, which is not protected against the hydrochloric acid like the stomach is. We all have a ring of muscles, called the gastroesophageal sphincter, that helps keep acid from entering into the oesophagus, but when this fails, the effects of acid reflux can flare up.

What Causes Acid Reflux?

There are actually quite a few things that can cause acid reflux and heartburn symptoms, as not every incident is food related as most people think. If you’re experiencing heartburn often, and with varying degrees of discomfort, you may want to do more than watch your diet. Regular occurrences of this should be discussed with your healthcare provider.

— Hiatal Hernia

In short, a hiatal hernia occurs when the upper part of the stomach and lower oesophageal sphincter moves above the diaphragm, which normally separates the stomach from the chest. Stomach acid can move much more easily into the oesophagus because of this. This problem needs to be addressed by a doctor, and may require surgery to correct.

— Pregnancy

Hormone levels as well as the growth of the baby in the womb can create acid indigestion due to the increased pressure against internal organs. Unfortunately, an alleviation of the discomfort is how you address this issue, which normally ceases to be a problem after the child’s birth.

— Smoking

Smoking can create a myriad of problems associated that increase the chances of acid reflux. An increase in acid secretion, decrease in salivation which helps neutralize it, damage to muscles in the throat and mucus membranes can all contribute to heartburn and severe discomfort.

— Diet

There are certain foods that can trigger heartburn, as can eating a large meal, laying down or going to sleep immediately after eating. Some of the most common to cause problems with indigestion include spicy foods, alcohol and carbonated beverages, citrus, caffeine, fatty foods, and even certain mints.

— Obesity

Being overweight can place pressure on your organs, and create slight displacements which push up against the stomach. This can create higher incidences of acid reflux, which can lessen when weight is lost.

— Medication

Certain medications, both over the counter as well as prescribed, can lead to acid reflux symptoms. If you suspect that your medication is giving you these side effects, speak with your healthcare provider about alternatives.

What Can Help Alleviate Indigestion?

Lifestyle choices, changes in diet and your sleep patterns are all things you should consider to help avoid and alleviate your acid reflux incidence level. There are also over the counter and prescribed medications you can take to begin your process of healing and working towards fewer occurrences of these symptoms.

If you suffer from heartburn symptoms more than twice a week, you may be diagnosed with Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease, or commonly known as GERD. Sufferers of GERD often need to approach their recovery with lifestyle, diet changes as well as medical advice to help pinpoint the cause and create a plan to alleviate the worst of your discomfort.

What to Consider When Choosing a Pillow for Acid Reflux

Choosing a pillow for acid reflux is not as simple as finding one that works best for your sleep position, then narrowing it down to personal preferences for your needs. If you suffer from acid reflux and it worsens, or is especially bothersome when you’re trying to sleep, the objective is to try and move the acid away from your oesophagus to get some relief.

The simple solution is to use gravity to your advantage, and raise your upper body to help keep acid from rising further into your oesophagus. Unfortunately, this means you have a limited amount of pillow from which to choose from, and mainly limited to wedge-shaped pillows of various heights and materials.

Side and stomach sleepers may find themselves the most uncomfortable with wedge pillows as they’re found to be most effective for back sleepers. Some wedge pillows use a softer layered foam in order to better accommodate different sleeping positions.

Conclusion

Although all wedges share a common shape and purpose, they’re not all the same and can offer sleepers various levels of comfort and assistance in different problem areas. Although all of our above suggestions are some of the most popular according to consumer reports, our top pick is the Milliard Bed Wedge Pillow with Memory Foam Top due to its soft, conforming surface for both back and side sleepers, gentle slope, and reliable support it lends to a variety of comfort needs. If acid reflux and heartburn is an issue for you, then a wedge pillow is exactly what you need to alleviate discomfort. The best part is that a wedge pillow is so useful for many other uncomfortable ailments and can help keep your airways open for an overall better night’s sleep.

Recent Updates

June 14, 2021: Our previous #1 recommendation, the Xtreme Comforts Memory Foam Bed Wedge Pillow has been replaced by the Milliard Bed Wedge Pillow with Memory Foam Top due to product unavailability and popularity of the Milliard brand in bedding. Awards have been signed to each product including our Editor’s Choice, Best for Traveling and Best for Combination Sleepers. Two additional questions have been included in the FAQ section as per popular consumer queries: “What size and height is best for an acid reflux pillow?” and “Does elevating the head of the bed help with acid reflux?”

Frequently Asked Questions

Do wedge pillows work for acid reflux?

Yes, wedge pillows help alleviate acid reflux. Lying down, your body is in a horizontal position, making the reflux worse as the acid from your stomach moves up in your esophagus. While there are many treatments available for the condition, wedge pillows can ensure you get a good night’s sleep by raising your upper body at an angle and using gravity to prevent acid from rising up in the esophagus.

What are the many uses for an acid reflux pillow?

There are many benefits of an acid reflux pillow that you can gain from different positions. You can use an acid reflux pillow under your head to assuage the reflux action, by placing your head and neck at an angle that maintains spinal alignment. You can use the pillow upright for back support while reading or watching tv. Place the pillow under your knees for lower back and leg support. This will improve blood circulation and release pressure points in your body for healing. You can also use the pillow for leg elevation to soothe swollen ankles by placing it at the end of your bed.

How do you sleep on a pillow for acid reflux?

Place the wedge pillow against your headboard so that when you rest your head on the pillow, it is elevated on the gentle slope. Your head and upper torso should be angled at 30 to 45 degrees for maximum comfort from acid reflux without the risk of hurting your neck or spine during sleep. You can sleep on your back or your side on this pillow.

What is the best acid reflux pillow?

Our top choice is the Milliard Bed Wedge Pillow with Memory Foam Top as it has a soft, conforming surface for both back and side sleepers, is great for injury recovery and most importantly is the most affordable buy of our top 5 picks.

What size and height is best for an acid reflux pillow?

The ideal height of loft of a wedge pillow is typically between 7-8 inches, and you'll find several of these options in our list above. An adjustable height is also a great option as this is completely customized to suit your comfort level. The length and width of your pillow is completely dependent on your personal needs, however wedge pillows are typically 20x20 inches in length and width. Wider pillows are great for neck and shoulder support, particularly if your shoulders are broad.

Does elevating the head of the bed help with acid reflux?

In the same way that wedge pillows help reduce acid reflux symptoms, elevating your bed head works in the same way as your body is still being elevated to a more upright position. This means that your stomach acid is less likely to rise up into your oesophagus, so any sort of upper-body elevation definitely helps with acid reflux.