Many people have opposing opinions about how a pillow can relate to and influence an individual’s vocalization.
I’ll scientifically and unilaterally explain this.
I have 22 categories that influence breathing and vocalization. Let’s try to figure out who is right.(19)
Part 19 is “Pillow”
I know a soprano singer, who said to me, “I do not use a pillow when I sleep at night, because my voice does not sound right the next day.”
How is sleeping with a pillow relevant to vocalization?
Below, are the following: Three key questions I will elaborate on.
(1)Does the voice change whether a pillow is used or not?
(2)Do the voice changes depend on the quality of pillow used?
(3)What is the best sleeping position – on the stomach, side or back?
I’ve asked several singers and voice actors, their opinions. As a result, most of them stated, “I do not mind. I can sleep with or without a pillow.” Although sleeping with a pillow is more common and generally more comfortable.
Many people roll over or toss and turn when sleeping at night. That is why I have to suggest, there are certain variables to consider when choosing the right sleeping position. It is very rare an individual can sleep throughout the entire night without switching positions. Although, switching positions too often may be the result of discomfort, which many people refer to as restless sleep. Have you ever had a restless night and woke up with a raspy voice? This is because sleep can and does influence and invidual’s voice. Restless sleep and too much or too little sleep, will result in noticible changes to the voice shortly after waking up. Most people sleep on their back, because they can keep the normal/natural curvature of the cervical spine.
That is the main reason why most people sleep with a pillow. So they can keep the same pose when sleeping, as when standing. The main target pose being, ‘straight.’
I don’t think this preferred sleeping position has an negative impact on head, shoulders or neck. Some people prefer a soft and fluffy pillow, some prefer a thin and hard pillow, and some prefer several pillows. The quality of pillow and individual prefers accomodates the level of comfort in the head, shoudlers and neck.
Therefore, the more less popular opinion is that of the soprano singer. Who claimed, “I do not use a pillow when I sleep at night, because my voice does not sound right the next day.” This opinion is not shared by everyone. There is the possibility of straining the neck and shoulders, if the pillow is not the correct size or not positioned adequately while sleeping. The fact of the matter is, that there is no supporting proof, that sleeping without a pillow will make an individual’s voice better.
Therefore, using a pillow while sleeping solely depends on personal preference.
This are just insightful pros and cons, surrounding the use of a pillow and how it can relate to vocalization.
Note: When people, who have ‘functional dysphonia,’ or ‘Deep Larynx Position,’ sleep on their back, they often gag or feel a choking sensation.
The chocking or gagging sensation is not immediate in most cases. Often, they don’t even wake up in the middle of night. Though, they feel uncontrollable choking or gagging directly after waking up the next morning. This is because the larynx sinks toward the cervical spine under the weight of thyroid cartilage. Therefore, if you suffer from either of those issues, I suggest you sleep or lie down primarily on your side. You will be less likely to feel the sesatiion of choking or gagging after waking up.