Updated July 13, 2020 by Melissa Harr

The 10 Best Sit Up Pillows

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This wiki has been updated 30 times since it was first published in April of 2015. Whether you're confined there for health reasons or just enjoy reading or watching TV while resting in bed, one of these sit-up pillows can support you in a much more comfortable position than a regular pillow can. They are available in a wide range of durable materials and attractive colors with ergonomic designs that may include features such as armrests and neck cushions. When users buy our independently chosen editorial choices, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.

1. Husband Pillow Big Bedrest

2. Avana Kind Bed Orthopedic

3. Vekkia Premium

Editor's Notes

July 09, 2020:

At this time, we still like the idea of an inflatable sit up pillow, but we are worried that the Homca Inflatable is not durable enough for the long-haul. As this is perhaps a dealbreaker for some, we ultimately decided to remove it. But you can capture some of its adjustable firmness with the Vekkia Premium, a type of memory foam pillow that arrives with extra foam. This allows you to stuff it more or less full, according to your personal comfort level.

When it comes to quality and usability, however, we still think both the Husband Pillow Big Bedrest and the Avana Kind Bed Orthopedic still come out on top. Unlike some smaller models, such as the Brentwood Originals Backrest, they provide more than enough support for most users. We also like that the Husband Pillow comes in a variety of colors; this is also true of the Yogibo Support, a helpful cushion for sitting up but not necessarily for reclining.

Finally, we added one fun decorative choice, the Brentwood Originals Mongolian Fur Jr. Its shaggy faux fur cover is sure to draw a few glances, and there are plenty of cushions from Brentwood Originals to go along with it.

May 23, 2019:

Although it offers a soft cover, the Milliard Reading Pillow seems quite lumpy to a large number of users, so we decided to remove it. But we still think the Avana Kind Bed Orthopedic is the top choice for those looking for serious comfort, since it's more of a system and less of a single cushion. It's not exactly cheap, but if you want to spend a lot of time propped up, or if you have to, it may be worth the investment. It's soft against the skin, too, and not scratchy. There's also the BetterRest Deluxe Incline, which gives you a similar incline, although it seems firmer. If you're looking for something less spendy, the Brentwood Originals Bedrest or Linenspa Reading Pillow might do the trick. The former comes in a number of colors, while the latter is currently only offered in blue and gray. The Linenspa comes in two sizes, though, so it suits both bigger and smaller users. Finally, we opted to add something a little different, the Homca Inflatable. You probably shouldn't expect to be too rough with it, but if you'll be traveling or camping and simply can't do without a sit up pillow, it's got your back — literally.

Special Honors

Le Sourceress Bespoke Complement your boho or retro décor with Le Sourceress Bespoke, a handmade choice crafted from vintage fabrics for one-of-a-kind appeal. Each has a handsome contrast piping and is soft to the touch, although this model doesn't come stuffed — so expect to provide your own filling. etsy.com

Amped Fleece Boo You'd have to search high and low to find an option much softer than the snuggly Amped Fleece Boo. It's cuddly and touchable, as well as a cinch to carry with you, since it has a handy canvas handle for toting. urbanoutfitters.com

Sharper Image Back Wedge The Sharper Image Back Wedge gives you the best of a massaging cushion and a wedge pillow, all in one nifty item. The built-in, dual massagers run on four AA batteries, while the cushion itself can be flipped for use two ways, depending on whether you need to recline or sit up. sharperimage.com

4. Yogibo Support

5. Brentwood Originals Backrest

6. Drive Medical Folding Wedge

7. Brookstone Bed Wedge

8. Linenspa Reading Pillow

9. Brentwood Originals Mongolian Fur Jr

10. BetterRest Deluxe Incline

On Making Bed Even More Of A Comfort

If you're going to be sitting still for a long period of time, though, you might as well do so in the heights of comfort.

According to the National Sleep Foundation, the average adult between the ages of 26 and 65 should spend anywhere from seven to nine hours asleep in his or her bed each night. In practice, many studies have concluded that at least forty percent of Americans get less sleep than their bodies probably need, which can lead to chronic sleep debt, a condition in which the brain and body are habitually fatigued and usually unable to perform at their peak potential.

There are myriad ways to add to the duration and improve the quality of sleep you get each night. These included minimizing nighttime distractions like television, phone or computer usage, or game playing. Establishing a quiet, dark environment free from flashing lights or other distractions is also important. And then of course you simply have to provide yourself enough time for adequate sleep, including the time it takes for your mind to unwind and descend into slumber.

When not sleeping, many people still spend a lot of time in bed. As long as it does not interfere with your bedtime and sleep schedule, your bed is a great place to relax while you watch a movie, do some work, talk on the phone, read a book, or kill time browsing a website or social medial platform. If you're going to be sitting still for a long period of time, though, you might as well do so in the heights of comfort.

And for those confined to bed for reasons of age, illness, or recovery after a surgery or injury, a bed is more than a place to relax, it is the only safe place to be. Whether you are relegated to bed rest for medical reasons or you simply want to take it easy in comfort, a dedicated sit up pillow will always beat a pile of random quilts and pillows stuffed behind your back.

The Sit Up Pillow For Comfort

If you love spending time sitting in bed watching movies or binge watching shows on Netflix, gaming, reading, or chatting on the phone, then you owe it to yourself to get a great sit up pillow. Not only will the use of a sit up pillow make you immediately more comfortable thanks to their padding and support, but it will also help prevent stiffness and soreness after extended time spent sitting in bed.

Remember, your bed was designed for use while lying flat. Comfortable, long term sitting up in bed requires a reconfiguration of this purpose-built piece of furniture. Swap out the pillows you use for sleep and prop yourself up with a sit up pillow to avoid back aches, neck strain, and other discomforts. As for the right sit up pillow for use as you relax in bed, first consider whether you are more comfortable resting against a soft, cushiony surface, or if you like some firm support. (Think of it as the difference between a plush recliner and an ergonomic office chair, e.g.) Then decide what material you will find the most comfortable: a plush shaggy cover, a soft and smooth microfiber, or a warm fleece, to name a few.

And, finally, consider the other attributes a sit up pillow can offer that you might appreciate while relaxing in bed. Some units have built in cupholders, for example, while others are high-backed and feature excellent neck support thanks to attached headrests or pillows.

The Sit Up Pillow For Medical Purposes

There are multiple medical conditions that can land a person on extended bed rest. Some of the most common include a complicated or sensitive pregnancy (or the recovery period following the birth), the recuperation period following a surgery or injury, or an illness that saps a person of his or her strength and requires minimal activity, such as a bad flu, mono, or any of the other multitude of sicknesses out there.

A sit up pillow can be used to help position the body properly while a person is confined to bed.

Being confined to bed can be frustrating, and it can actually become quite uncomfortable after an extended period of time. The human body was not designed to sit halfway supine for that long. Sitting in bed without proper support can put undue pressure on a person's coccyx, lumbar region, spine, and other parts of the body. Prolonged periods of relative inactivity in improper positions can also cause nerve compression that leads to issues ranging from "pins and needles" to more painful conditions like "entrapment neuropathy", also known as nerve compression syndrome.

A sit up pillow can be used to help position the body properly while a person is confined to bed. By establishing relatively neutral pressure on the spine, by supporting the lower back, and by allowing for a comfortable angle of reclining that permits proper blood flow throughout the body, these pillows maximize the comfort of their users. This is of critical importance for those who will be forced to spend extended periods of time in bed, especially for the elderly who might have a skeletal, neural, or muscular system already compromised by age.

Sit up pillows can also provide welcome relief to those who suffer from acid reflux disease. If sitting relatively upright is the only way to prevent the pain and suffering associated with gastrointestinal acid making its way up from the stomach and into the esophagus, then a sit up pillow can provide the comfort needed for reflux sufferers to actually get some rest (and ideally even some sleep) while ameliorating their condition.

Melissa Harr
Last updated on July 13, 2020 by Melissa Harr

Melissa Harr is a language-obsessed writer from Chicagoland who holds both a bachelor of arts and master of arts in English. Although she began as a TEFL teacher, earning several teaching certificates and working in both Russia and Vietnam, she moved into freelance writing to satisfy her passion for the written word. She has published full-length courses and books in the realm of arts & crafts and DIY; in fact, most of her non-working time is spent knitting, cleaning, or committing acts of home improvement. Along with an extensive knowledge of tools, home goods, and crafts and organizational supplies, she has ample experience (okay, an obsession) with travel gear, luggage, and the electronics that make modern life more convenient.

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