Tips for Choosing the Best Mattress if you have Chronic Back Pain
If your back hurts often, you need a really firm mattress to offer a lot of support, right? Well, not necessarily. The experts say that the best mattress for lower back pain is a personal choice of what feels most comfortable to each individual. The appropriate amount of firmness is a personal preference, just like the “correct” temperature to make a room comfortable.
It’s an important choice since most of us will spend the next several years on the mattress we order from the showroom. Considering how miserable the pain can be from nerve and muscular problems, degenerative disc disease, arthritis, sciatica, and other back pain, the mattress can either be a source of relief or one of the major things that can aggravate these conditions. A comfortable bed can work with pain medication and skilled medical oversight to lay the foundation for restful, restorative sleep.
Considering the Fundamentals
Despite the differences between various bed brands, experts say shoppers should look for some basic things that the best beds and mattresses share in common. For example, how well mattress keeps the spine aligned.
Those with wider hips may need a slightly softer mattress due to the way that the spine may twist to a greater degree on a flat surface. Someone with narrower hips will more naturally align.
Is memory foam good for your back?
Unlike a traditional innerspring mattress, the foam in a memory foam mattress molds to your body when the surface gives to your body weight under the influence of gravity. This “melting” quality cradles pressure points on the body.
Flexabed offers Memory Foam mattresses consisting of a Visco comfort layer and a polyurethane foam core. The Gel-Infused Memory Foam option creates a cooler surface, which can also improve sleep quality by virtue of eliminating surface hot spots. Flexabed also offers an Innerspring/Memory Foam Combo that is specially constructed with durability, support, and comfort in mind.
Other options available from Flexabed include the latex rubber mattress (laminated to the polyurethane foam), the low-profile mattress (which can reduce bed height due to its slim characteristics, and both deluxe and traditional innerspring mattresses in soft, medium, and firm. Our friendly USA-based support team is happy to explain the differences between the mattress choices and help source a Flexabed dealer in your area.
What the Research Says about Mattress Choice and Back Pain
Sometimes, simply replacing your existing mattress with a new one offers relief. Oklahoma State University researchers linked greater sleep quality and comfort, as well as reduced back pain, stiffness, and shoulder pain, to sleeping on a new mattress. Their article gave a fresh analysis of earlier work published by the Journal of Chiropractic Medicine.
“The purpose of this study was to compare sleep comfort and quality between personal and new bedding systems. The average bed age was 9.5 years. It was concluded that new bedding systems can significantly improve selected sleep variables and that continuous sleep quality may be dependent on timely replacement of bedding systems,” the abstract reads.
A reduction of pain and stiffness and improvement of sleep comfort and quality became more prominent over time, especially in medium- and higher-priced beds. This suggests that mattresses have a life expectancy related to sleep comfort and quality.
How should I sleep with lower back pain?
Adjustable beds can offer some relief to those suffering from joint pain and lower back pain, as we’ve discussed in past blogs. The best strategies for alleviating pain are best discussed with your family physician and/or chiropractor. The information provided in this blog is not intended as a substitute for medical and/or chiropractic care.
Flexabed offers a Chiropractor Partnership Program for those who want to help their patients achieve a more restful night’s sleep in a Flexabed Adjustable Bed and Flexabed mattress.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What type of mattress is best for chronic back pain? The best mattress for chronic back pain varies from person to person, as it is a personal preference. However, mattresses that offer adequate support and keep the spine aligned are generally recommended.
- Should I choose a firm mattress if I have chronic back pain? Not necessarily. The appropriate level of firmness for a mattress is subjective. It’s important to find a balance between support and comfort that works best for you.
- Is memory foam good for back pain? Memory foam mattresses can be beneficial for back pain as they contour to the body’s shape, providing pressure relief and support. Gel-infused memory foam can offer a cooler sleeping surface.
- What other mattress options are suitable for back pain? Apart from memory foam, latex rubber mattresses can also be a good choice as they offer both comfort and support. Innerspring mattresses with varying levels of firmness are available as well.
- Can replacing my old mattress help with back pain? Yes, studies have shown that replacing an old mattress with a new one can lead to improved sleep quality, reduced back pain, and increased comfort. The life expectancy of a mattress is related to sleep comfort and quality.
- How should I sleep with lower back pain? The best sleeping position for lower back pain can vary, but generally, sleeping on your side with a pillow between your knees or on your back with a pillow under your knees can help alleviate discomfort. It’s best to consult with a healthcare professional for personalized advice.
- Can adjustable beds provide relief for back pain? Adjustable beds could offer relief for joint pain and lower back pain by allowing you to find a more comfortable position. However, it’s important to discuss the best strategies for pain relief with your healthcare provider.
- Are there specific mattress options for individuals with wider or narrower hips? Individuals with wider hips may find slightly softer mattresses more comfortable to accommodate the natural alignment of their spine. Those with narrower hips may find different levels of firmness more suitable. It’s a matter of personal preference.
- How can I determine if a mattress keeps the spine aligned? When choosing a mattress, it’s recommended to test it out and assess how well it supports your body. Look for a mattress that maintains the natural alignment of your spine without causing any additional discomfort or pressure points.