Real (pillow) talk: Wedge pillows can truly be the bedroom addition that your sex life never knew it needed. These versatile items can help you achieve a near endless array of intimate positions with much more comfort and stability and for longer periods of time. But that might be a story for a different day, because according to medical professionals, wedge pillows can also serve a much more conventional purpose.
Dr. Kristle Lynch, a gastroenterologist and spokesperson for the American Gastroenterological Association, explained to HuffPost that common conditions such acid reflux or gastroesophageal reflux disease, commonly known as GERD, can occur when a person’s stomach is full and they lie down flat, as contents from the stomach may then move backwards more easily and flow into the esophagus.
“This may cause troublesome symptoms of acid reflux, including heartburn and liquid regurgitation,” Lynch said, adding that it’s normal for the stomach to have acidic contents, but not the esophagus.
“A wedge pillow keeps the esophagus and stomach at a more upright angle and can be helpful in letting gravity assist with forward movement of stomach contents when one is asleep,” Lynch said.
Those who chronically experience these symptoms may find it helpful to invest in a wedge pillow, which are often made from foams of varying densities and come in a variety heights, although Lynch’s pro tip is to opt for one that is six to eight inches tall.
“Sometimes patients will buy a 12-inch one, but they slide down given the steep incline,” she said. “Keep in mind that you can use a regular pillow on top of a wedge pillow to make it more comfortable for your neck.”
Speaking of the neck and back, The Sleep Foundation says that “a wedge pillow can help promote proper spinal alignment and relieve pressure on the back, neck, and shoulders.” There’s also research to suggest that sleeping in a supported, inclined position can reduce snoring and obtrusive sleep apnea, as well as nasal congestion.
Whether you’ve been convinced to try a wedge pillow for alleviating acid reflux or neck pain or for reasons of a more sexy variety, peruse the upcoming list of wedge pillows that include adjustable height pillows, leg wedges and of course the Liberator, a wedge and ramp combination pillow that was actually designed for sex, though it works well for addressing discomfort, too.
HuffPost and its publishing partners may receive a share from purchases made via links on this page. Every item is independently selected by the HuffPost Shopping team. Prices and availability are subject to change. The experts consulted for this story do not necessarily endorse the products ahead unless otherwise noted.
A versatile combination wedge and ramp pillow
The Liberator is a wedge and ramp combination pillow that, although it was created with the intention of enhancing sexual experiences, can also be used like a traditional wedge pillow in a variety of positions to support your head and back. The smaller wedge can be used beneath your knees to align your spine. According to its maker, the Liberator's ergonomic design makes it easier to explore a range of sex positions comfortably and more stably, without any kind of added strain. Available in four colors, the combo pillow has a removable and machine-washable cover that's made from a unique microfiber material that allows the wedge and ramp pillows to stick together and stay in place, even during vigorous movement (while sleeping or otherwise).
One of the most popular wedge pillow options on Amazon (it's got over 11,860 five-star-ratings) is this elevated sleeping pillow made from a high-density foam core and a plush memory foam top layer to promise the ideal amount of support. It features a removable jacquard pillow case for easy cleaning and is available in a variety of height and width options, as well as styles like a pregnancy support pillow and a headboard wedge pillow.
That awkward gap that runs in between your mattress and headboard can become a black hole for lost phones and wayward pillows and just a general source of discomfort. This wedge pillow is designed specifically to fill that gap and help bolster your existing pillows for added neck support. Available in three colors and four bed sizes, it's made from a layer of high-density foam on the bottom and a top layer of adaptable memory foam. It also features small storage pockets on either side of the pillow, and the removable cover is machine-washable.
Easily adjusted into several different positions with varying degrees of incline, this seven-in-one wedge pillow can meet your comfort needs and help with pain relief. Made from two layers of visco-elastic memory foam and two inches of a gel memory foam topping, this pillow can be used to support your legs, recline in bed or sleep comfortably in an elevated position. It also has a breathable bamboo cover that's removable and machine-washable.
This eight-inch leg pillow is designed to relieve hip and lower back pain and may also reduce leg and foot swelling through elevation, and it can also be used to keep your head and neck lifted. It's constructed of a soft and plush memory foam and comes with a breathable cover that's easily removable and machine-washable.
This reclining pillow set made from adaptive memory foam can be adjusted to two different heights and comes with two different headrests that securely attach to the upper or lower part of the pillow using Velcro straps.
Available in either an eight-inch or 10-inch height, this wedge cushion features a top layer of therapeutic gel memory foam that can help disperse heat and keep you cool while you sleep. It's angled at an ergonomic 30-degree incline and comes with a removable and machine-washable cover.
With an ingenious folding design, this memory foam pillow can be positioned in a variety of ways to help ease physical discomfort. It features a machine-washable cover and comes in an elevation of up to 12 inches.