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HomeExclusiveShould I Get A Firm Or Soft Mattress

Should I Get A Firm Or Soft Mattress

Is A Firm Mattress Good For Your Back

Firm vs Soft Mattress – Which One Should You Get?

Firm mattresses can be a good option for people who have lower back pain. A firmer mattress can offer support that keeps your lower back from sinkingand it can help distribute your weight evenly.

However, a firm mattress isnt always best for back pain. Other factors come into play, like sleep style and body type.

Add A Mattress Topper

Many mattress toppers are made to provide more cushion, but some models add more firmness to a sleep surface, like latex mattress toppers. Latex foam is firmer than memory foam and has a responsive bounce. You wont sink as deeply and might find it easier to switch sleeping positions.

A mattress topper may be a temporary solution to a sagging mattress, but if you start experiencing pain when you wake up that fades during the day, it might be time for a new bed.

Finding The Best Firmness Level For You

Two main aspects dictate what mattress firmness level you need: your body weight and your sleeping position. Your sleeping position can affect everything from your spinal alignment to your blood pressure to your digestion to your sleep quality. It also significantly impacts your firmness needs because of the different ways the mattress cushions your body.

When you add your body weight into the mix, it can further affect your needs. No matter your size, youre going to want your mattress to have at least a little contouring to alleviate pressure and distribute body weight. I

f youre on the lighter side, you might have to go a touch softer than the corresponding firmness to your sleep position so you get a mattress that compresses enough. Conversely, if youre heavier, you might have to go up a firmness level to make sure your mattress doesnt compress too much.

We have also written guides comparing soft mattresses to firm and medium mattresses, so shoppers can better understand their options:

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Suitable For Heavy Sleepers

Those over 230 pounds will experience more sinking than a lightweight sleeper. If the mattress is too soft, a heavier person will sink too far and hit the harder support base on the bottom of the bed. Resting on the hard core of the bed could cause pain near the pressure points.

Additionally, sinking can cause the sleeper to feel stuck in the bed, making it difficult to change positions during the night. This restricted movement could also lead to poor circulation and trouble breathing. With a firm mattress, the lungs can expand and blood can flow freely.

How Much Should A Quality Mattress Cost

Firm Vs Soft Mattress

When it comes to shopping for a new mattress, buying a high-quality mattress for more restful sleep is an investment in your health and happiness.

These are a few considerations that affect the price of a mattress:

  • As you would expect, the larger the mattress, the more it costs. A king mattress will cost significantly more than a twin.
  • Materials make a difference. Foam is the least expensive to produce while latex is the most costly.
  • The advanced features used in higher-end mattresses are reflected in their price. Expect to pay more for mattresses with cooling technology or edge reinforcement.
  • Online shopping for a mattress in a box will cost you less than shopping from a physical retail store where overhead is higher and mattress prices are marked up to compensate.

A budget foam mattress may cost $450 or less. Higher-end foam mattress options start at $600 and up. Expect to pay $1,200 or less for a budget latex mattress and at least $2,500 for a luxury option.

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Why Choose Firm Mattresses

There have been several arguments for and against firm and soft mattresses. While either side has provided valid points to back their allegiance, science has a perfect answer to the debate. The choice mattress should present the bones with some resistance.

For firm mattresses, your bones, not the muscles, are forced to act as a support system to your body. This means that your muscles get time off to relax and heal properly from the exertion of the day before. This will also improve blood circulation to all body areas and prevent the lower back from sinking into the mattress. The support provided for the back can help prevent back pain.

Why You Might Need A Firm Bed

There are many reasons why you might need a firmer mattress. Your bed may have simply arrived a little softer than expected. Also, some mattresses tend to get softer with time, as you break them in. If you have a back injury or some back pain, your doctor may have recommended that you sleep on a firmer surface. Or maybe your partner moved in, and they need a firmer mattress. Whatever it is, were here to help.

Lets first go over some reasons why having a firmer versus a softer bed can be so important, and then well talk about some options for making your mattress firmer.

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Do Firm Mattresses Last Longer

Most mattresses last about 7 to 10 years, regardless of it being plush or firm. Your mattress firmness does not play a role in its lifespan.

The crucial factor in your mattresss longevity is its construction and what its made from. Your mattresss support layerthe layer built to prevent sagging and wearshould make up at least 50 percent of your mattresss construction.

So, if your mattress is 12 inches thick, the support layer should be no thinner than 6 inches. Any less than this can lead to rapid wear and sagging, meaning youll have to replace your mattress sooner.

How To Determine If You Need A Firm Or Plush Mattress

Should I get a firmer mattress or a softer mattress? | Ultimate Mattress Buying Guide

Many individuals struggle with discomfort, particularly athletes, seniors, and those who struggle with hip and shoulder pain. If you relate to this, you may need a softer mattress with excellent pressure relief. Sleeping on top of a plush surface can be incredibly helpful for hip and shoulder pain due to a plush products pressure relieving abilities.

On the other hand, if you find yourself often waking with a sore lower back, you may need a firmer product to keep your spine aligned. If you’re resting on a surface that’s too soft, your spinal alignment could become crooked or hyperextended, which could lead to back problems and even breathing issues.

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Mattress Firmness Vs Support

There is a clear misunderstanding in the bed industry about perceived firmness and support. Often the two words are used interchangeably. We cant stress enough how these two words have very distinct meanings and are not the same thing.

The support unit of your mattress is nearly always dictated by your weight and height.

This is because spring units are manufactured with certain load or weight tolerances. This means they are made to take a certain amount of weight to load and unload correctly. If you imagine the force you must apply to a standard spring to compress it and then how much force is needed to be removed before it will extend, this sometimes helps understand this principle.

Most people mistakenly confuse the spring tension with how the mattress will feel

Its essential that you know the weight limit that can be applied to the spring to work out if it is going to be suitable for you. Even if you want the firmest mattress possible, a spring that is too firm ie has too wide a gauge for your body weight, will never give you proper support. You will merely rest on the top of it like sleeping on a hardwood floor. The spring units sole purpose is to compress and extend to accommodate your weight, lumps, bumps, elbows and wriggling needs.

Can Plush Mattresses Be Too Soft

A mattress can be too soft for certain people. If you notice your mattress has started to feel too soft, check your warranty, it may be time to replace your mattress or box spring.

If your mattress isnt due to be replaced, you may just need to add some firmness to it. This can be done by adding a firm mattress topper to your bed. You can also try placing a piece of plywood underneath your mattress.

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Plush Vs Firm Mattress: What’s The Best Mattress For You

While lack of support is what causes you to wake up with back or shoulder pain or feeling like you didn’t get a good night’s sleep, Oexman says, comfort plays a role in how quickly you fall asleep versus how much you toss and turn once your head hits the pillow.

So, consider both the support you need as well as what is most comfortable for you to find your perfect mattress.

Our mattresses come in a variety of firmnesses to suit every sleep style. Try a new Saatva mattress for 180 nights to see if one of our plush, medium firm, or firm mattresses is right for you. If you decide your initial selection isn’t right for you, you have the option to exchange your mattress for another firmness during the trial period.

Firm Mattress: Overview And Benefits

Firm VS Soft Mattress

Firm mattresses rank a 7 or higher on a firmness scale of 1-10. These mattresses feature a thinner comfort layer, while still providing sleepers with a moderate amount of support. Compared to plush mattresses, firmer mattresses have less give and responsiveness.

Those who suffer from back pain or have spine issues can find nighttime relief by switching to a firmer mattress. When you sleep on a firmer mattress, you wont have to worry about sinking into it.

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What Is Mattress Firmness

Firmness refers to the initial feel of a mattress when you lie down. Mattress companies typically designate where their products fall on a firmness scale of 1 to 10 . Think of it as a spectrum of softness and firmness with variability in-between. Mattress firmness can also be conveyed in three simple categories: soft, medium, and firm.

Its important to understand that firmness and support are not synonymous. Support refers to how the mattress encourages proper spinal alignment. Support and comfort arent mutually exclusive, either. A mattress can be soft while offering excellent support. A firm mattress can be counterproductive, creating too many pressure points. Firm mattresses can also prove to be extremely comfortable, with soft comfort layers resting atop a supportive, durable core construction.

What Are The Benefits Of A Soft Mattress

Sleep on a softer mattress comes with plenty of benefits of its own. Often recommended to side sleepers, or sleepers who struggle with back pain, the natural feel of a soft mattress tends to cushion the joints and muscles for a comforting night of sleep.

Soft mattresses are also a great choice for light sleepers, who find hard mattresses exert too much pressure when theyre trying to rest and recharge for the night. When sleeping on your side, a softer mattress is naturally able to keep your hips aligned, which makes them an ideal choice for sleepers who prefer this position.

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How Can I Make My Mattress Firmer On One Side

Couples may have differing sleep preferencesone person prefers a firmer surface, while the other person likes a softer mattress. An excellent solution is to add a mattress topper. Mattress toppers add softness or firmness to a surface. Placing a mattress topper on your side of the bed may give you the extra cushion or support.

Are Plush Beds Bad For You

Soft vs Firm Mattress (Which Bed Is Right For You?)

Theres a common misconception that firm beds are good for you while plush beds are bad for you, but this is untrue. Plush beds and firm beds are simply suited for different sleepers.

If you are petite, a combination sleeper, or side sleeper, plush mattresses should offer a good level of cushioning for your needs. However, if you sleep on your stomach or back, the cushioning and sinkage may cause your spine to curve unnaturally, thus leading to pain and discomfort.

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Using The Mattress Quiz How To Figure Out What Mattress You Should Buy

With so many mattresses available on the marketplace, shopping for a new bed can feel a bit overwhelming. Our mattress quiz will help you decide which mattress is the best fit for you. This personalized tool finds mattresses that are most compatible with your sleeping position, body type, and budget. The quiz will also incorporate factors such as temperature preferences and sleeping with a partner, which can both affect how comfortable a mattress feels for an individual.

Firm Or Soft Mattress: Verdict

Finding the right mattress for a comfortable and restful sleep comes with no shortage of options. As manufacturers develop a range of products that go from very soft to extra hard, consumers in the market for a new mattress do well to understand the personal elements that play into the soft-to-firm spectrum.

Beyond how comfortable a mattress feels when initially going to bed, the real test of whether a mattress is a good fit depends on the level of refresh and rejuvenation felt on waking. Whether too soft or too firm, sleeping on the wrong mattress results in poor sleep and an achy body. Make sure youre considering your sleeper type, body type, and the needs of others who might share a sleeping space with you.

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Is It Better To Sleep On A Firm Or Soft Mattress

The firmness level depends on several factors. Sleeping on a firmer surface is best for plus-size sleepers, back sleepers, and stomach sleepers. They need a firmer surface to stay rested on top of the bed without deep sinkage.

Side sleepers and lightweight sleepers rest better on a softer mattress since a soft surface better cushions the body and relieve pressure build-up areas, like the shoulders and hips.

Firmness And Pillow Loft

What Mattress Firmness Is Right For You?

Pillows play an important role in mattress firmness preferences. Pillow loft, or pillow thickness, can greatly affect the feel of a mattress. The thickness of a pillow is measured using the term loft. Low-loft pillows measure less than 3 inches thick, medium-loft pillows measure 3 to 5 inches thick, and high-loft pillows measure more than 5 inches thick. A good rule-of-thumb when choosing pillows for a mattress: the lower the firmness setting, the lower the pillow loft.

The table below features a detailed breakdown of the optimal pillow loft for different firmness settings:

Firmness Range
Good to Very Good

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Is A Firm Or Soft Mattress Better For Hip Pain

In many cases, the best mattresses for hip pain are softer to relieve pressure and tension. Soft or plush mattresses can cradle and support the hip joints while you sleep. This contouring support is especially beneficial for reducing hip pain for side sleepers and combination sleepers.

Larger individuals who suffer from hip pain may require a slightly firmer mattress to alleviate their pain. Those who sleep on their back and stomach may also find more relief from hip pain on a firm mattress. So whether a firm or soft mattress is better can depend on a persons sleep style.

What Is A Firm Or Soft Mattress

All right, before we get started if you want to see a list of our top picks for best soft mattresses or best firm mattresses just head over to

Theyre gonna find some great mattresses review, some bedding reviews and some great information about how to find the best mattress for you.

Lets talk about firm mattresses and soft mattresses, first off, what are we talking about when we say firm and soft

Here at Thebettersleepstore to use a scale of 1 to 10 and six-and-a-half is about medium firm right in the middle of that scale

Beneath six and a half, youre gonna be getting softer

5 and a half or a five above that youre getting firmer

Youre gonna have like seven, seven and a half eight sometimes even nine, thats going to be on the firmer end

Below six and a half soft

Above six and a half is going to be firm

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How Can You Tell If A Mattress Is Too Soft

There are a few telltale signs that your mattress is too soft to support you:

  • Your mattress sags under your weight.
  • You feel as though youre rolling toward the middle or falling off the side of your mattress.
  • You may wake up with stiffness or soreness in your lower back.
  • You sleep on your stomach and wake with a stiff neck.
  • You find it difficult to roll over or get in and out of bed without feeling stuck.

Advantages Of Firm Mattresses

Firm Vs Soft Mattress – Which Is Best?

A firm mattress provides extra support for those who need it. If you suffer from hip or back pain, the problem might be that your mattress is either too soft or its gotten older and the support you once had is no longer there.

Most firm or soft mattresses can be used with an adjustable base, and there are some that feature incredible technology. For example, the Tempur-Ergo Extend has a built-in Sleeptracker device that actually gently raises your head while youre asleep if it detects that youre snoring. Since almost half of all adults snore, its a great way to get your best nights sleep regardless of whether you get a firm or soft mattress.

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