The human body is strong yet very sensitive and delicate, especially when it undergoes a surgery. After every surgery, you need to be careful about your body movements so that the wounds heal properly and the body returns to its healthy stable condition back again.

Jump directly to: Check best pillow for shoulder surgery

In today’s world, more than 20 million people are suffering from various shoulder issues like arthritis, rotator cuff repair, bursitis, clavicle, or scapula fracture. Doctors recommend shoulder surgery to get relief from these shoulder issues.

In the normal routine, we have a habit to put our arms in different positions while sleeping, under the head, under the pillow, across the chest, or sometimes just aligned with the thighs.

But, if you had shoulder surgery, this is no more possible until you do not recover completely. A recommended & best pillow for shoulder surgery can come to your rescue.

After the surgery, you will be quite uncomfortable placing your arm in a position where the wound do not get hurt. The arm needs proper support and that will be possible if the whole body is in the right shape and aligned with the best pillow for shoulder surgery.

Tips After Shoulder Surgery

Here are some useful tips that are recommended by doctors and physiotherapists to adopt post-surgery. These are the measures that will help to remain comfortable in your bed and put your arm where the wounds will recover sooner without hurting.

  1. Medication

The first and foremost thing that the doctor is going to recommend is medication. Follow the doctor’s instructions properly and take all the medicines regularly. Without these medicines, the process of healing will become slower and painful for you.

These medicines will be including the pain killers before bed-time so that reduced pain will let you sleep peacefully all night.

  • Sleep in an inclined position

After surgery, especially bone surgery like a shoulder, it is recommended to sleep in an inclined position. This will help to reduce the pressure of the body on the arms and compression on the shoulders and will provide a more comfortable sleep position.

This position also helps to prevent from turning over and lying on the wounded shoulder. A wedge pillow is one of the best pillows after shoulder surgery. It will be more suitable for this position and will help to elevate your body, taking off pressure from the shoulders while sleeping.  

  • Swap the bedsides

Post-surgery, you must lie at the bedside that is more convenient for your injured shoulder. If you sleep on the left side and now you have surgery of your left shoulder, swap the side and shift to the right side of the bed.

This swapping will protect your partner from rolling onto your injured shoulder while sleeping.

  • Use a pillow to prop up the arm

An arm often gets cramps and gets numb post-surgery. You should use a pillow to prop up your arm. Try putting a pillow between your arm and torso. This position will regulate the blood circulation through the arm and will prevent cramps and numbness. 

  • Use a sling

Wearing a sling while sleeping can ensure a better position for the healing shoulder. This will also prevent putting your arm in a hurting position, unconsciously.

  • Icing

Icing your injured shoulder before going to sleep will help in reducing the pain and inflammation of the wound. You can use an ice-pack wrapped in a towel and put it on the shoulder wound directly for about half an hour.

How do you arrange pillows after shoulder surgery?

How long should you sleep in a recliner after shoulder surgery?

One of the major complaints after shoulder surgery is difficulty in sleeping. Shoulder has a lot of nerve endings and joints making it difficult to find an ideal position to sleep. It takes about 6 weeks for discomfort to ease. At this time, it is mandatory to keep the sling on even while sleeping.

Many recommend sleeping on a recliner so as to not put any pressure in the shoulder area. Using a recliner after initial few weeks after surgery is recommended. This does not give you the freedom to turn sides in your sleep.

Can the wrong pillow cause shoulder pain?

Yes especially if you have an injury or have undergone a shoulder or rotator cuff surgery. There are pillows designed to help ease the pain and sleep in the right posture.

Best Pillow for Shoulder Surgery

We talked earlier about using pillows to have a comfortable position after shoulder surgery. The best pillows designed to use after shoulder surgery are a must-have if you are planning to undergo a surgery. Now, let us see which pillows are the best to be used after shoulder surgery.

Coisum Cervical Pillow – Neck and Shoulder Pain Relief



  • Quality Memory Foam
  • Orthopedic Contour
  • Measures 24.4x15x4.3 inches
  • 3.44 pounds
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Breathable


  • Coisum Cervical pillow is a specially designed pillow for the people suffering from neck and shoulder pains, specifically after a shoulder injury.
  • This pillow, made of slow rebound memory foam provides medium-firm support to the back and the side sleepers.
  • This pillow cradles the head and neck in such a way that the body gets aligned and takes off the pressure from the injured shoulder.
  • Sleeping on one wing will allow the curve of your shoulder to fit in the cutout under the wings.
  • The pillowcase is made from breathable and hypoallergenic polyester fiber that keeps the pillow cool.
  • This skin-friendly pillowcase can be removed and washed.
  • The pillow is mold-resistant.
  • Do not expose the pillow to sunlight or water. They will damage the pillow.

SilverBack Wedge Pillow- Post Surgery



  • High-quality memory foam
  • Anti-snore
  • Wide and large
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Measures 25″ W x 26″ L x 7.5″ H
  • 3.64 pounds


  • Silverback wedge pillow is made from a high-quality 2 inches memory foam on the top and 5.5 inches base foam made of premium grade Polyurethane.
  • This wedge pillow is 26 inches large, 25 inches wide, and 7.5 inches high to provide maximum support to the body, especially to those who just had shoulder surgery.
  • It is good for post-surgery inclined sleeping. It elevates the body to the height that reduces compression on the shoulders.
  • This elevation also helps to control snoring, acid reflux, and heartburn.
  • The pillow is encased in a bamboo cooling cover which is hypoallergenic and dust mite repellent.
  • The pillow cover is removable and washable.

CushionCare Cervical Pillow for Neck and Shoulder Pain



  • Orthopedic Contour
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Temperature-sensitive foam
  • Measures 23.5x13x5.5 inches
  • 3.39 pounds
  • Free Sleeping Mask


  • CusionCare provides this cervical pillow for a complete orthopedic contour.
  • This pillow provides a soft to medium support to the body with special support for the arm, shoulder, and cervical support for back sleeping.
  • This pillow is made from high-density and high-quality memory foam.
  • This foam is temperature-sensitive and adjusts with the body temperature, and weight.
  • This pillow has a wide 7 inches cradle support for the neck and head to prevent from rolling into the wounded shoulder.
  • This pillow equally fits to back, side, and stomach sleepers.
  • The inner cover is hypoallergenic and resists dust mite.
  • The outer cover is made of white and grey colored designed fabric. It is removable and washable.
  • As a gesture of special care, CushionCare sends a gift of a free sleeping mask along with the pillow delivery.

Cushy Form Bed Wedge Pillow



  • Firm yet soft
  • Improves Blood Circulation
  • Medically Designed
  • Breathable
  • Ergonomic shape bed wedge pillow
  • 100% money back guarantee


  • Works as a recliner due to its shape.
  • Supports back and shoulder at the same time. Designed to alleviate the body and is recommended after shoulder injury or surgery
  • The memory foam in the top part of the pillow aids comfort and required support
  • Pillow is breathable making it comfortable to use for extended periods
  • Much larger in the size compared to typical wedge pillows. This is much needed after a surgery to keep your body in the right posture
  • Multipurpose and adjustable.
  • Memory Foam Top : 25 x 24 x 12 inches; 6.22 Pounds

Remedy 80-YT225 Contour Pillow



  • Poly fiber
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Ear pocket
  • Travel size
  • Measures 21x 17x 5 inches
  • 1.65 pounds


  • Remedy 80-YT225 is a special and guaranteed product of Bluestone.
  • This u-shaped pillow is filled with hypoallergenic poly fibers that contour the neck, head, and shoulders and remove the pressure points that cause shoulder pain.
  • This pillow comes with ear pockets on both sides and makes it an ideal pillow for the back, side, and stomach sleeper.
  • It is a lightweight pillow and comes in a size that makes it easy to carry while traveling.
  • The pillow is enclosed in a zipper cover made of cotton. This cover is removable and washable.

Sleep Yoga BP-SY02 Arm Rest Pillow



  • Armrest
  • Blend of Cotton and Coolmax
  • Chiropractor-designed
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Measures 18.5x12x9 inches
  • 3.29 pounds


  • Sleep Yoga BP-SY02 is a special pillow featured for the armrest.
  • The thick and comfy pillow is filled with a blend of cotton and Coolmax, the patented material from Denmark.
  • This a specially designed pillow for the people who recently had shoulder surgery.
  • This pillow keeps the recovering shoulder aligned, and protects the shoulder from slouching and creeping forward.
  • It gently supports the elbow, wrist, and hand as they rest on the pillow.
  • It has a special Chiropractor-design to make it workable for arm and shoulder injuries.
  • The pillow is hypoallergenic and comes with a removable and washable cover.

Splendoress Bed Wedge Pillow for Post Surgery



  • 30 to 45-degree angle
  • Breathable
  • Anti-allergy
  • 27 x 24 x 7. 5 inch
  • 4.94 pounds


  • Splendoress wedge pillow is an ideal pillow for the people dealing with post-surgery pains.
  • This pillow is filled with a high-density and firm memory foam.
  • This pillow provides special support and contouring for the upper body, shoulders, neck, and head for a comfortable sleep.
  • It elevates the body at an angle of 30 -400 which helps in reducing snore, acid flux, heartburn, allergies, and breathing problems.
  • This pillow comes in cotton, breathable, and washable cover.
  • It can be a good elevating pillow for maternity, reading, and leg lifting.

Arm Slings

In addition to the best pillows after shoulder surgery, arm slings are highly recommended by doctors for better support of healing and recovering shoulder. Here are some slings that you can have after your shoulder surgery.

Velpeau Arm Sling Shoulder Immobilizer

  • This sling is available in 4 sizes.
  • The weight of the sling is 12 ounces.
  • It is suitable for both arms.
  • It is made of a skin-friendly sweat cloth and sponge.
  • It is easy to put on, off, and adjust.
  • It helps to reduce pressure on the shoulder and neck strain.

Shoulder Abduction Sling with Pillow

  • This sling is available in a large size, suitable for adults.
  • The sling weighs 1 pound.
  • It has an adjustable shoulder strap for added convenience and comfort.
  • It can be used for both arms.
  • It also has a waist strap to prevent brace rotation.

Read Also:

Best pillows for those suffering from back pain

Top Lumbar Support Pillows

How to prepare before surgery?

Shoulder surgery is a process that may take a few hours, but the patient may take a few days or months to recover completely. This recovery process is a bit tough.

So, besides deciding on the best pillows for shoulder surgery, you must prepare yourself for the other matters as well.

You know you would have to do many things by one arm only, so make sure to put things ready when you get back home. Like;

  • Go for grocery before surgery and take those items in bulk that are your favorite brands and will be difficult for others to search them for you. It can be your favorite food, drink, toothpaste, soap, toilet paper, or similar things.
  • Fresh food is best for health but after surgery, you won’t be able to cook for a few days. So, bring some frozen food items that will be easily cooked with less effort and less time. You can bring frozen meat, frozen vegetables, frozen fruits, etc.
  • Maintain a medicine box for your medicine you will be needing after surgery. It will be handy and always in your reach.
  • Look at your washroom. After surgery, it will be difficult for you to take a bath. Arrange a shower chair, detachable showerhead, and pump soap. These items will make bathing easy for you with a single arm.
  • Keep within your side drawer some extra trash bags, bandages, and athletic tape to use in case of emergency.
  • If you live alone, it will be difficult to manage daily routine tasks like driving to and from the hospital, laundry, etc. You must ask a close friend or a relative to lend you a helping hand in this hour of need. This will also be helpful for emotional support.
  • Above all, you need to have a positive and hopeful attitude. This is the most important factor that will help you recover earlier.

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