The Best Mattress for Each Sleep Position
Your mattress is a key player in your overall health and happiness. The average adult spends about eight hours in bed every night, and the wrong mattress can make those hours a nightmare.
Aches, pains and lack of rest all lower your quality of life, and your mattress may be the culprit. Not all mattresses are created equal, and even a high-quality mattress can lead to persistent and disruptive sleep issues if its design isn't meant for your preferred sleeping position. Here are some statistics to consider:
- Up to 80 percent of Americans will experience back pain at some point, and half of all working adults experience back pain one or more times per year.
- Around 50 to 70 million adults have a sleep disorder, and 37.9 percent have accidentally fallen asleep during the day one or more times in the past month.
A good portion of people with sleep issues, back problems or both may be able to trace their symptoms back to their mattress. If you find yourself tossing, turning and desperately trying to get comfortable, you likely don't have the right mattress for your sleep position. If your position and mattress are incompatible, you won't be able to get the most out of your nights.
In general, the way you sleep falls under one of three categories: side sleepers, back sleepers and stomach sleepers.
Side Sleepers | Mattresses for Side Sleepers | Back Sleepers | Mattresses for Back Sleepers | Stomach Sleepers | Mattresses for Stomach Sleepers | Size and Other Considerations | Experience The Davids Difference
Most people prefer to settle on their sides to sleep. According to a study of more than 3700 people, 74 percent of people are habitual side-sleepers. Unfortunately, there are some significant caveats to sleeping on your side. This position puts significant pressure on the body and can cause pain if your mattress isn't built for it.
The hallmark of an appropriate mattress is a straight spine. But obviously, the human body is not flat on its sides. Shoulders and hips protrude, and when your body meets the surface of a mattress one of two things can happen:
- Creation of Pressure Points: The worst outcome is that shoulders and hips meet a surface material that isn't soft enough to alleviate pressure. This creates pressure points at the shoulder and hip, leading to undue strain on these joints. Pressure points also cause your body to sag in between the pressure points, moving your spine out of alignment.
- Support for the Joints: On the flip side, when you have a mattress appropriate for side sleepers, the shoulders and hips can sink down further into the top material of the bed, so the trunk of the body can remain straight. The right mattress keeps all three of these points in alignment and also prevents undue pressure from straining your joints.
The best mattress for side sleepers will be a pillowtop or memory foam. These mattress types offer the soft exterior side sleepers need to cushion their shoulders and hips while providing the strong inner core required for long-term spinal support. If you're looking for the best mattress for side sleepers in Harrisburg, PA, Davids Furniture has a selection to match your needs. These two types of mattress fulfill all of a side sleeper's requirements:
Hybrid Pillowtop - Medium: This mattress type offers exceptional value to side sleepers thanks to innovative combinations of pocketed coil and foam technology. The best pillowtops feature independently-moving coils to offer the targeted support each unique body needs. Plush pillowtops are generally hybrid mattresses, meaning they incorporate one or more layers of foam in addition to the coils. The combination of foam layers with springs offers a balance between the benefits of both types of material. The firmness of springs provides the core support side sleepers need to remain aligned, while cushioning protruding shoulders and hips. If you're a side sleeper looking for ultimate comfort, a mattress with multiple layers of foam offers the best comfort. More foam layers means more precise control of softness and support.
Memory Foam - Medium: Memory foam mattresses are a great option for side sleepers due to the way they conform to the sleeper's weight and shape. Since pressure points are such a problem for side sleepers, the ability to sink right in is highly appealing. Although memory foam can be an excellent option, side sleepers often mistake softness for support and choose a mattress that sinks down under their trunk as they sleep. Side sleepers need only their shoulder and hip pressure points to sink in, so a soft foam mattress usually doesn't do the job. This sleeping position does best with a medium foam mattress.
Back sleeping is both the most recommended and least common sleeping position. Only eight percent of adults sleep on their backs, and most of them don't realize back sleepers have different needs than those who sleep in other positions.
The best thing about sleeping on your back is that it keeps your spine in a neutral position. There's no extra pressure on your shoulders or hips, so the chances of back or joint pain steeply decrease. Back sleeping is also good for reducing acid reflux but can result in increased snoring and sleep apnea symptoms. With proper neck and back support, these symptoms are reduced.
To benefit from the advantages of this sleeping position while minimizing the risks, you need an appropriate mattress. It may seem best to go with the firmest mattress available, but firmness doesn't always equal support. The best mattress for back sleepers is one that balances firmness with supportive yet conforming materials.
In many cases, the best option will be a hybrid incorporating the strength of coils with the softness of gel or foam. Box tops and euro tops have a plush layer much like a pillow top but offer a greater surface area for sleeping.
If you're searching for the best mattress for back sleepers in Mechanicsburg, PA, or nearby, these types available at Davids Furniture should make your shortlist:
- Hybrid Eurotop - Firm: Back sleepers benefit from having firm support, but need enough cushion to preserve alignment. Although conventional wisdom recommends the hardest bed possible for this position, there is one major problem with this approach. A hard bed will cause a back sleeper's spine to flatten out of its natural S-curve. When your spine is flattened by a too-hard bed, the strain on your lumbar vertebrae can really take its toll. Over time, you'll experience tension and pain in your lower back that makes it tough to get out of bed. Hybrid Eurotop mattresses designed for back sleepers have a firm inner core of coils and a relatively modest layer of pillowy cushion on top. A firm Eurotop mattress would be too hard for most side sleepers, but provides the right amount of cushion to keep back sleepers comfortably aligned.
- Memory Foam - Firm: You might think that a firm memory foam mattress is a bit contradictory, but the latest advances in the field have produced some of the best mattresses for back sleepers. The different layers in these mattresses work together to provide comfort and support that conforms to a wide range of individual needs. Back sleepers will find a quality foam mattress has enough give to be comfortable without allowing your body to sink in enough to cause misalignment. Foam mattress design also minimizes motion transfer, an issue that innerspring-only mattresses have as they enter the top end of the firmness scale.
Stomach sleeping is associated with the most negative effects of any position. When you sleep on your stomach, your spine starts curving upwards at the ends, leading to unnatural stretching and strain on the vertebrae. In order to breathe, you also have to turn your face to the side, which also puts undue strain on your neck.
Most people try to get around this uncomfortable curvature of the spine with a creative array of pillows as scaffolding, but this often ends up making things worse. Pillows generally don't offer enough support to keep you aligned without creating more pressure points.
Another issue with stomach sleeping is heat generation. Stomach sleepers produce even more heat than back sleepers, and it can interfere with your night's rest. Your body begins to wake up when you get too hot, leading to chronic interruptions in sleep.
Pain and sleep deprivation due to stomach sleeping can become so bad that some people even try to switch to another position. That's much easier said than done, and it may cause less headache and sleep loss in the long run.
If you're near Mechanicsburg, PA and looking for the best mattresses for stomach sleepers, stop by and try these options:
Hybrid Plush: Stomach sleepers need far more give than those who sleep on their backs or sides. Going to sleep on your front can create a number of unpredictable pressure points depending on your shape and size. You still need support, however, and the pocketed coils in hybrid mattresses form a strong core that won't leave you slumping in your sleep. The best mattresses use a support layer in the center to create a strong core for subsequent layers of soft comfort foam, with exceptionally luxuriant gel foam for a soft sleep surface. The design allows stomach sleepers to arrange themselves comfortably but receive the support needed to alleviate stress on the neck and back. Stomach sleepers with a hybrid plush will be able to sink right into sleep while maintaining healthy spinal alignment.
Memory Foam - Soft: Stomach sleepers often love the feeling of sinking in and hugging the mattress. Foam mattresses offer remarkable softness and flexibility along with the breathability stomach sleepers need. The key to choosing the best soft memory foam mattress is finding one that uses different types of foam. The incorporation of multiple foam layers allows the mattress to adapt to your body configuration and keep heat from building up, without sacrificing support.
The best mattress for each sleeping position also depends on the quality of the mattress. It's possible to get the right type of mattress, but have to replace it soon due to poor quality. Davids Furniture doesn't bother with bottom tier mattresses because we want our customers to get the best sleep. You can find your ideal mattress from top quality brands like Sealy, Stearns & Foster and Tempur-Pedic.
When determining the best mattress for each sleeping position, you have to consider the size and weight of the people sleeping on it. If you are heavier or lighter than average, you will need to adjust your mattress options accordingly. Someone who is short and slim can go for softer mattresses, while those who are heavy and tall need a firmer mattress for long-lasting support.
If you have a sleeping partner, your sleeping positions can determine what size mattress you need. Two back sleepers take up much more room than two side sleepers, and a pair of stomach sleepers take up the most space by far. Getting a large enough mattress ensures you don't end up cramped during your sleep. It's no good having a supportive, comfortable bed if you can't stretch out to enjoy it.
Different sleeping positions also play a role in the type of mattress you should buy. For example, if you're a side sleeper and your partner sleeps on their stomach, what mattress works best?
In this case, it's best to compromise on the side of the stomach sleeper. Making them sleep on a firmer mattress can lead to increased aches and pains, while a side sleeper can use a softer mattress without any ill effects. Likewise, if a back sleeper and a side sleeper go in on a bed together, it's best to defer to the side sleeper in terms of firmness. Since back sleeping keeps the spine aligned the best anyway, back sleepers can usually adapt well to the medium firmness best suited to side sleepers.
Buying a new mattress is one of the most significant ways to improve your health nearly overnight. Upgrading your mattress to better suit your sleeping position not only increases your comfort, but it also makes far-reaching improvements on your well-being. You'll fall asleep faster, experience fewer sleep interruptions and wake up with fewer aches and pains.
For side sleepers, the right mattress won't create pressure points that concentrate weight on your shoulder and hip. Back sleepers can benefit from the aligning power of firm mattresses, which helps reduce airway restriction and breathing problems associated with sleeping on the back. Stomach sleepers may benefit the most from a new mattress by enjoying a much more cool, comfortable and breathable sleep.
Choosing your new mattress — or any substantial article of furniture — is not a decision you should make lightly, and it can be tough to sift through all the information out there. That's why Davids sends out a newsletter to keep you in the know. Subscribe now to get helpful tips and tricks for choosing and maintaining furniture, so you can be better prepared when the time comes to buy the best mattress for your sleep position.
If you have specific questions or just want to talk to a friendly and knowledgeable furniture expert, contact Davids Furniture by phone or email. We can help you evaluate all the factors that influence your sleep and do our best to find the best mattress for your lifestyle.
Our locations in Harrisburg and Mechanicsburg, PA make us a convenient place to get your questions answered and even try out that new mattress you've been wanting. We look forward to assisting you in any way we can!