There was a time where I didn't care about the pillow I rested on my head upon to sleep. Fluffy was nice, but not an absolute. Heck, I would wait a very long time before replacing pillows that were as flat as a pancake. Did this contribute to my neck problems? Oh, no doubt-but back then, so many things were factors in the problem that the pillow I used wasn't the sole cause.
Then I had the surgery. I had a neck that usually didn't hurt too much, but some mornings, I would wake up with a bad twinge. So I figured I should seek an ergonomic pillow of some sort. After all, the point of the surgery was to straighten the vertebrae and knit some new bone. But you usually don't get to test drive pillows. Buy one that's crappy and you're stuck with it. Not exactly what I was going to do when I was working for a pittance teaching wage.
A vlogger raved about her Tri-Core pillow and why she liked it, and it sounded like a good option for side sleeper like me: firm sides and a depression in the middle for my head, like this:
I finally understand why I see people carrying their pillow through an airport. I sleep so much better with this pillow, because there is great support for my neck.
It becomes very obvious how awesome the pillow is when I *don't* sleep on it. We spent a night in Daytona earlier this summer-I had an achy neck that hurt to turn the next day. There were two times here at home that I slept in my lovely chaise chair-and the same thing happened. So, I won't do that again, and you will definitely see me schlepping my pillow with me when I travel. It'd be worth it at twice the price-but I'm glad it's not.
The takeaway? If your neck hurts when you get up in the morning, consider a different pillow. This one is the TriCore and I got it on Amazon, but do some exploring for what works for you. You will be happy you did...