Which Mattress is best for your back?

Mattress advice by Osteopath in LymingtonOrthopaedic mattress is a common term bandied around, it just means having a mattress that is going to support your body in a way that helps to prevent injuries of the joints and muscles overnight in bed. But this does not guarantee no injury- it very much depends on your sleeping position, your pillow and your quality of sleep too, but a good place to start is to get the right mattress for you!

There are sooooo many options nowadays. What is ideal is something ‘medium-firm’ or that reacts to your pressure, preventing your body from sinking into the mattress too much over night, putting unnecessary pressure on certain areas. But what a lot of people fail to think about alongside this is whether it suits their comfort needs- being too hot, too firm, too soft can really mess with your sleep, causing further problems, here’s a brief overview of some main types of mattresses on the market;

Memory foam; These are made of all memory foam, Tempur are probably the most well known. These are great as they react to your body’s heat and mould your body in just enough to support you and make you comfortable and reform again after use. The support from an expensive good quality one is great for resting your body overnight, though if you tend to get hot in the night, this may not be for you. Also, like all mattresses, beware of the cheaper brands- read reviews vigorously- they don’t tend to last as long so you’ll end up having to replace them as they lose their ‘memoriness’.

Memory foam topper; good for a temporary purpose or to top up an over firm mattress if good quality, again, unfortunately, if used on top of a poor mattress (saggy) to begin with this won’t solve your problems really, sorry! It will dip in the places that dip in the mattress, so I would only go there if you have a good firm mattress anyway- which then you wonder, is there much point? Some people like the feel of memory foam for the comfort- it’s a personal thing.

Pocket sprung; These are said to be better than open coil as the springs are sewn into its own pocket of fabric, allowing the springs to dip individually they often also come with increased density of spring available– offering more comfort and support in reaction to your body position, also causing less disruption if you and your partner are very different weights/sizes, and move about.

Open coil; interconnected springs are the most common types of mattress found these vary in quality like everything else, the gauge of the spring refers to the thickness of the spring- the lower the gauge the firmer the mattress. The density in springs is important- the less dense the coils- the less support and more likelihood to sag more quickly depending on weight and positioning- length of time in bed etc, so a higher number of springs is essential to better support you.

Mixed/Hybrid; there are now loads of ‘hybrid’ type mattresses around, combinations of springs, pocket spring and memory foam or various types of memory foams- the trick here is to read about what’s in it- use the definitions above and really, if they offer a trial period where you can try it- take them up on it!

I have used mattresses of all types in the past, I loved my memory foam mattress but did find it really hot in the summer, and now have an Eve mattress which is ‘new generation’ memory foam which does feel slightly cooler than the Tempur, I found it really firm to begin with and it took me 3 months to get used to it and feel completely comfortable- but now it’s perfect for me! So, these things can take time, but the main thing is finding something to keep the body in as neutral a position as possible through the night, but that is also comforting for you- you want to feel that your bed is inviting and really comfortable- sounds obvious, but lots of people make the mistake of going for the ‘best option’ without actually considering their comfort needs. Take advantage of the trials out there, it’s worth taking time to sleep on it at least a month before committing.

Hope that helps you a little on finding your perfect mattress!

Thanks for reading,

Michelle