The 3 Best Cervical Traction (Chiropractic) Pillows for Neck Pain

cervical traction pillows

Can you imagine your neck pain finally relieved (or even gone) – in just a few days?

It doesn’t have to stay in your imagination.

A high quality (and the right) cervical traction pillow can make this fantasy come true.


– Help you sleep through the night pain-free

– Gently stretch and relieve your shoulder muscles

– And even reduce snoring (by keeping air passages optimal while you sleep)

If you suffer from military neck, herniated cervical disc, neck arthritis or any neck problem – a cervical support pillow can change your life.

In a hurry?

See our #1 choice for the BEST Chiropractic pillow for neck pain

But how to choose the best cervical pillow – for the best price?

You’ve come to the right place.

Cervical Traction Pillows for Neck Pain: Important Features

1. Resilience & Durability

Every pillow has a shelf life. In neck traction pillows, the shelf life depends on the quality of materials, but mostly on how dense it is.

Some pillows have less stuffing in them, which makes them less dense and therefore will break down faster.

Others are denser, but because of it are more firm, and could be less comfortable.

The best pillow will be dense enough to last for years, but not too dense to be uncomfortable.

To prevent your investment from disappearing in a year, look for a pillow that offers a warranty for losing shape and resilience.

For example:

The Therapeutica sleeping pillow comes with a 5 year warranty for resilience!

2. Shape

Neck traction pillows come in different shapes.

You have the trapeze centered pillows, v-shape pillows, the contour pillows and ones that have a wedge extension to support your upper back.

It really depends on personal preferences, but I can tell you that some pillows are not well fitted for side sleepers.

If you’re a side sleeper, choose a pillow that its side-sleeping portions (“side wings”) do not allow you head to slip back to the center while you’re sleeping, or allow your neck to be tilted either up or down.

(See the two best pillows to train you to sleep on your back HERE.)

3. Size

Cervical traction neck pillows come in different sizes (usually small, medium and large).

Sometimes the size depends upon the distance between the side of your head and your shoulder. Other times it depends on the size of your bed.

For most average sized people the medium should be perfect.

4. Materials

Some cervical pillows are made with foam, some with memory foam and some with Polyester fiber.

They all have their pros and cons, but some say that memory foam is less than ideal, because as you sleep and the pillow gets warm – your heads sinks into the pillow and spinal alignment is reduced.

Foam will feel “harder” than Polyester but will support your neck a bit better.

For example:

The popular arc4life cervical linear traction pillow is stuffed with Polyester fabric, while the Therapeutica pillow is made with foam.

The Top 3 Cervical Traction Pillows for Neck Pain

Through our research, here are our recommendations for the 3 best neck traction pillows in 2017:

1. Therapeutica Sleeping Pillow

therapeutica traction pillow

Therapeutica Sleeping Pillow – see all sizes & today’s price

As you can see in the picture, the Therapeutica pillow incorporates 2 pillow shapes into one with different heights for back and side sleeping.

Although it has an odd shape, it correctly positions the head and neck, both when sleeping on the side and back.

The center tongue, which supports the neck towards the area between the shoulder blades, works very well.

A unique feature in this pillow is the wedge extension which supports your upper back as well.

Pillow Weight – 1 pound.

Resilience – the Therapeutica pillow is made with foam, which is dense and won’t crumble easily.

In any case, this pillow has a 5 year warranty for shape and resilience.

Side Sleeping – this is probably the best cervical traction pillow for side sleepers, due to its excellent side wings, which are easy to keep your head on when you’re sleeping on your side, and won’t make your head tilt forward or slide back down to the center.

Therapeutica Pillow Best Price

The Therapeutica does not come very cheap, but when we check this page we sometimes find great sale prices. If you find it for less than $90 – it’s a great price.

Pillow Cover – the Therapeutica comes with a free fitted polyester/cotton machine washable zippered pillow cover.

Sizes – the Therapeutica comes in 5 different sizes!

Therapeutica Pros 

  • This pillow is very comfortable to sleep on, while aligning your neck and spine – either on your back or on your side.
  • It takes no getting used to, and the side wings are the better than any other pillow we’ve tried.


  • This pillow would probably not be comfortable for someone with a reversed cervical curve, or an immobile neck. For most everyone else it can be the perfect cervical pillow.

2. Arc4life Cervical Linear Traction Neck Pillow

arc4life traction pillow

Arc4life Cervical Linear Traction Neck Pillow – see what Amazon buyers think

The arc4life cervical pillow is a v-shaped cavity center pillow, as you can see in the picture above.

The special “V” shape in the neck pillow cradles your head and gently lifts your head away from your shoulders.

At the same time, the neck roll underneath supports your neck. While sleeping on your side, the soft wings keep your head at the right height from the mattress, to relieve strain on your neck and shoulders.

Weight – 1.5 pounds (but may vary, since stuffing is made by hand)

Resilience – through my research, I’ve found that the arc4life starts to lose shape after 12 months. I found no warranty.

Sizes – the different sizes are for the size of your bed. Large would be for King, Medium for queen or full, and small, twin or single.

It only has to do with how wide the pillow is. A standard size pillow would look a bit funny on a king size bed, we think.

Material – the arc4life pillow is a sewn pillow case stuffed with polyester fiber, which is non allergenic.

Comfort – the pillow keeps your neck in proper alignment so it’s awkward, but after a couple of nights, it becomes very comfortable.

Pillow Cover – doesn’t come with an extra pillow cover or dust cover.

Arc4life pillow Best Price

This pillow costs a bit more than the Therapeutica pillow. We found the best price on Amazon.

Arc4life Pros

  • Through our research, the arc4life traction pillow is quite comfortable, and is especially well fitted for people sleeping on their back.
  • You can use the traction side for sleeping – thus giving your cervical spine a gentle stretch or the support side for sleeping.
  • The V is not really prominent, it is subtle, just enough to keep your head and neck in proper position. However, if you have a short neck you may find this pillow not right for you.


  • It takes a couple of nights getting used to, but then becomes very comfortable.
  • If you are a side sleeper, you should know that the side wings are not firm enough to keep your head in them and you may find your head slide back to the center (and out of alignment) when you’re side sleeping.

Pro Tip

Use a high quality neck massager pillow to immediately relieve your cervical muscle pain during the day. We reviewed and compared the 5 best neck massger pillows HERE.

3. Core 200 Tri-Core Pillow

tri core traction pillow

Tri-Core Cervical Pillow – see all 7 sizes and 3 colors HERE

The Tri-Core Cervical Pillow has a unique trapezoid center which gently cradles your head and supports the next in its natural position.

The most obvious difference between the Tri-core cervical pillow and the other 2 pillows mentioned here – is the price.

The Core 200 costs half of the Therapeutica and Arc4life pillows. Check today’s price HERE.

Pillow Cover – it doesn’t come with an extra pillow cover, but you can put a regular one on it, or even a silk cover which makes it feel wonderful.

Material – the pillow is made with 100% cotton and stuffed with fortrel fiber.

Sizes – comes in small, medium and large sizes. The medium size is 15 x 22.

Comfort – the Tri-Core pillow comes in 2 firmness levels. The large one is about 3-4 inches high (lifting your head).

To be exact – On the wider side, it is about 3″ deep and about 5″ across to the indentation. On the narrow side, it is less than an inch deeper and about 6″ across to the indentation.

It may not be comfortable in the first few days, but later it becomes very comfortable.

Tri-Core Pillow Pros & Cons

The Tri-Core 200 is a comfortable pillow, even for side sleepers. The side wings are firm enough to keep your head well supported and in good alignment, but not too firm to be uncomfortable.

This is quite a firm pillow so if this is what you need or your doctor recommends – it delivers. It’s as firm as it can be without being hard.

➡️ A Quick Cervical Pillow Quiz

Not sure which neck pain pillow is the right one for you?

Answer the short quiz below, and we’ll let you know:


☑️ The BEST Cervical Traction Pillow WINNER

I hope you’ve find these traction pillow reviews helpful.

Through our research, the Therapeutica cervical pillow is the best cervical pillow for neck pain.

It positions your head and neck perfectly, both when sleeping on the side or on your back. The wedge extension supports your upper back like no other pillow, it’s comfortable and comes with a 5 year warranty for losing shape. It’s the winner!

Note: If you want to take neck pain relief up a notch, we recommend buying a high quality neck heating pad to relieve your pain naturally – during the day.

Here’s our review for the top 3 neck and shoulder heating pads in the market.

Have you ever tried a cervical traction pillow to relieve your neck pain? what’s your experience? share with all of us in the comments below.

To your health and happiness,

The Back Pain Relief Products Team


Next, check out the best ways to do neck decompression at home.

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 17 comments
Karin Litzcke - last year

I have not tried the pillows shown here but have tried one made by Relaxus that is filled with buckwheat hulls. It’s an odd thing, but works pretty amazingly. You can massage iIt from side-sleeper thickness to back-sleeper thickness as needed.
The first one I bought looked like a half-full sack of rice, and I wondered why so little material was in it. I soon realized that there needs to be little enough material that for back-sleeping, the centre is near-empty. The second one I bought, after family co-opted the first one, had too much material in it and I had to take some out.
There are two downsides: one is that the sleeping surface is hard, so sometimes your ear gets compressed (you just have to make a divot for it). I change pillows for a while if the hardness gets to me. The other is that the material can migrate, so sometimes you wake up with less neck support than when you started. But I never wake up with a sore neck, which does happen with other (latex) traction pillows.
I like that it is a non-chemical option. It would probably make great garden mulch when it’s time for a new one too!

    meital - last year


    Thank you for sharing your experience with us!:)

Anne Branchaud - last year

I have Anykolosing Spondialis and at the point of complete fusion, can not lay flat, I have a bamboo spine, hunched over permanently, use rolled up towels in between my neck and pillow, sleep is not good at all will this pillow help me, I have bought tempetic ones, no helpful. Thanks

    meital - last year


    I’m sorry you are going through this.
    I would suggest trying the Therapeutica pillow reviewed above. Through my research is the best one.

CTS - last year

Our chiropractic office carried the arc4life traction neck pillow and it was well received by our patients. We recommended it for patients with neck pain, military neck and arthritis in the neck, among other ailments. It helped our patients quite a bit. 5/5

Sandy Bristow - 10 months ago

I was in a car accident in 1982 (35 years ago) and the result was a 35 degree reverse curve. With chiropractic and massage, traction and therapy I now have a neck that is mostly straight, but there is a slight curve appearing. I am in pain most of the time and sleeping is really a challenge. I have used a Wal-Pil-O for several years but I would like to try something new. Which one would be the best to try for my neck?

    meital - 10 months ago


    I’m no expert but it seems to me that the Therapeutica pillow would keep your neck straight and aligned through out the night.
    Also, I would highly recommend an infrared neck heating pad to manage and relieve your pain during the day. It’s very effective.
    See this post: https://back-pain-relief-products.net/heating-pads-neck-shoulder-pain/
    Go for the third one – the UTK infrared neck heating pad. If you’ve never tried infrared therapy, it can change your life.
    I wish you all the best and perfect health,

kate - 8 months ago

OK. I have osteoarthritis and was in car accident some years back – head smacked on steering wheel and when through side window.
I had a wonderful feather pillow with sort of roll for cervical spine. It died the death and am looking for replacement – can not find same.

I usually start the night on my back with other pillow under knees and turn onto left side during the night – while sleeping. Tired of waking in neck pain ….lasts for hours.

Can not find the old pillow style….looking for suggestions. I would like to awaken pain free once again. Thanks. Kate

    meital - 8 months ago


    I would try the Therapeutica pillow. It’s not as soft as you’re used to, but it can be helpful in preventing neck pain.
    I would also try cervical traction.
    I hope you get rid of your neck pain soon.

Jt - a few months ago

I have DDD of the neck and don’t know the right pillow to use. I am starting PT soon

    meital - a few months ago

    I would try the Therapeutica pillow. Also, infrared light therapy can be really helpful as drug-free pain relief for you, and to speed up healing.

Vanya Badlani - a few months ago

I have a severe neck ache and the pain goes down from my left chest to my left hand. Which is the suitable pillow for me? I have cervical problem.

    meital - a few months ago

    I would go for the Therapeutica orthopedic pillow. Good luck!

Cindy - a few months ago

What pillow would you recommend for a surgically multilevel cervical fusion with recently repaired separated cervical/shoulder muscles.

    meital - a few months ago

    I think the best pillow would be a wedge pillow, or a few soft moldable pillows, so you can wedge yourself in between a mountain of pillows so that you wouldn’t move when I you are asleep.
    I would also consult my doctor about this.

Carol Koenig - a couple of months ago

I have an extreme case of Occipital Neuralgia and can’t sleep at night without being in agony. Which of your pillows would be best for my condition?


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