Image showing good spinal alignment while sleeping on a mattress

What mattress is right for me?

How do I pick a mattress that is right for me? 

Another common question that we get asked at Holistic Bodyworks. So following on from our blog on pillows, we thought we’d make it easier to know when it is time to swap your mattress over or look at investing in a new one. 

 

How old is your mattress?

 

As a rule of thumb, if you have had your mattress for eight years or more it is probably best to start doing some research to look at replacing your current mattress. However, there are some mattresses that have a longer life span than others and some that have a shorter life span. Again, this is dependent on your sleeping patterns. A good sign to tell whether or not it is time to replace your mattress is your quality of sleep. If you are waking up during the night, restless during the night, waking up in pain, not sleeping through the night or waking up feeling not rested than that is a good indication that it is time for a new mattress.  

 

What Type of Mattress is suitable for me?

 

This is based purely of personal preference. Like with anything in life, there are many choices when it comes to the type of mattress that you can invest in.  

 

Memory Foam:  
  • Consists purely of memory foam 
  • Known for their:
    • Great support 
    • Pressure relief  
    • Body contouring.  

With the newer memory foam material they are not as hot as what their reputation has them to be. A lot of the modern memory foam have cooling properties, creating a cooler mattress than the traditional memory foams.  

 

Recommended for sleepers who: 

  • Want a great hug/body shaping 
  • Pressure relief 
  • Support  

 

Latex Mattress:  

Is made of latex foam, which has a good reputation for their cooling properties and comfort they bring.  

It is recommended for sleepers who want: 

  • Great responsiveness 
  • Comfort 
  • Bounce 
  • Cooling  

 

Coils: 

These are the most widely used and most popular material. Coils also known as an innerspring mattress have one or more layers of spring/coils (generally made out of steel material), which gives you the feeling of support and comfort. As a rule of thumb is that a larger number of coils typically means better comfort and support for sleepers.  

Coils are recommended for sleeps who want: 

  • A more traditional type of feel with springs 
  • Those who want a greater bounce 
  • Cooling 
  • Strong edge support  

 

Hybrids: 

Hybrids are constructed from a combination of latex, memory, polyurethane foams, coils and/or other materials. These are designed to maximise certain benefits while minimizing certain cons about mattresses. You can combine both latex and memory foam, which allows for the great bounce, cooling and responsiveness that is provided by the latex and the great pressure relief and support from the memory foam.  

 

Recommended for the sleepers who: 

  • The sleepers who want the best of both worlds  
  • Great bounce 
  • Support 
  • Comfort 
  • Cooling  

 

Pillow-top mattress:  

You can have an array of categories with the pillow top mattress (most of them are mentioned in the above) with a layer of soft material either stuffed/sewn into the cover. This provides a little bit more comfort and cushion for the sleeper. 

These are recommended for sleepers who: 

  • Prefer a softer and more cushioned comfort
  • Prefer a cloud-like type of support 

 

Adjustable:  

Adjustable type beds offer the ability to change the sleeping position of the mattress. You can elevated the feet and incline the back, sometimes these mattress allow the ability to vibrate, heat and or massage the sleeper.  

 

These mattress are typically recommended for people who: 

  • Specific needs that would allow them to benefit from the adjustable foundation
  • Medical conditions 
  • Older sleepers 
  • Snorers  
  • Chronic low back pain 

 

How much should I budget for my mattress? 

 

A quick answer – don’t budget for your mattress. Don’t set a limit. The price of a mattress doesn’t always reflect the quality and what is necessarily right for you. Sleepoplosis (2019) recommends $1000 budget for an ideal mattress, it gives you a wide range of mattresses to select from. Although, if you would like to go all out” for a king size mattress they recommended allocating $1500 for a budget. For a queen size bed, depending again what is right for you, don’t spend less than $500 on a queen size mattress.  

What does firmness of a mattress mean?
 

 

It means what is comfortable for you as a sleeper. It varies depending on your height, weight, sleeping position and individual preference. Most sleepers prefer a firmness in the 5-7/10 range but obviously this is dependent on sleeping position, weight and body types. If you prefer to go below a 4/10 you are more likely a side sleeper and if you go above a 7/10 means you are a stomach or back sleeper.  

 

What position do you sleep in? 

Side Sleepers:  

 

Side sleepers tend to move around throughout the night and don’t sleep in the one position. A lot of the time they can rotate from both legs being straight to one straight one bent to both bent. Side sleepers are recommended to go with a soft to medium level of firmness, usually something in the 3-6/10 range of firmness (10 being the most firm).  

Side, back, stomach, or a little bit of each. Everyone sleeps in their own, unique way. The big problem…most people aren’t searching for a mattress that supports their sleeping style. Each sleeping position has its own specific needs and ideal firmness level. A soft mattress with a lot of support will relieve pressure points on your neck and back. A soft mattress with a lot of support will relieve pressure points on your back and neck. Firmness and feel is important for side sleepers as you need a mattress that is soft enough to contour your curves of your body. If it is too firm, usually it will create pain around either your back, shoulder or neck.  

 

Back Sleepers: 

 

Firmness and support are both important factors for back sleepers. If a mattress is too soft it will create pressure points for you and not give you enough firmness that you require. This then may change how your posture will be for long periods of time while you sleep. Back sleepers usually look at firmness between 4-7/10.  

 

Stomach Sleepers:  

 

Stomach sleepers are recommended to look for mattresses that are supportive and that will provide equal support across their body. This is due to your torso applying most of the pressure on the mattress and if the mid-section sinks at the middle of the mattress this means that mattress is too soft and result in the spine curving, which may lead to lower back pain and or other musculoskeletal problems.  

Stomach sleepers when sleeping need to be as flat as possible with respect to the surface of the mattress. As a stomach sleeper you are looking at mattresses in the 5-7/10 range in firmness.  

 

How much do you weigh?

 

Your weight and body type does play an important factor when deciding what mattress you get. Your weight will influence the sinkage, hugging, cooling and support feel of the mattress. If you’re under 70kg and between 70-90kg or above 90kg and wanting to look at a medium feel mattress you will be looking at a 5-7/10 on the firmness scale. It is also recommended that people under 70kg to go 0.5-1 firmness points below what you actually feel like you bed. If you prefer a softer feel the firmness rating is lower and you are looking at mattresses between a 3-4/10 on the scale. If you prefer a really firm mattress you will be looking at an 8-9/10 on the firmness scale, although it is recommended for those above 90kg to look at a rating between 8/5-9/10 on the firmness scale.  

 

We hope this has been a helpful overview to read. If you have any questions or if you are injured or in pain, we advise you tobook a consultationwith one of our friendly Osteopaths or Myotherapists so we can talk through your problem, assess you thoroughly, and then advise the best course of action for you.  

 

 

Reference: 

 Sleepopolis. (2019). How to Choose a Mattress – 6 Step Guide | Sleepopolis. [online] Available at: https://sleepopolis.com/guides/how-to-choose-a-mattress/ [Accessed 26 Feb. 19.] 

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