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What Is The Difference Between Firm And Medium Firm Mattress

Do I Need A Firm Medium Or Soft Mattress

What’s the Difference between a Firm, plush and pillow top mattress?

Your mattress can have a big impact on your overall health and wellness. When it comes to choosing the best mattress, start by deciding whether you need a firm mattress, a medium mattress, or a soft mattress. Learn the differences between these three types of mattresses and how you can decide which type is right for you.

Creates Pressure Points For Side Sleepers

If youre among the majority of people who sleep mostly on your side, a firm mattress could be uncomfortable. Its lack of give can create pressure points, especially around your hips and shoulders. The good news is that Casper mattress experts have succeeded in creating zoned mattresses that ergonomically align spines and support various sleeping positions.

Plush Vs Firm Mattresses For Back Pain

Back pain is a common issue we often tend to forget about. Feels like we are used to living with back pain, and allow it to remain in the background while dealing with our everyday lives.

Well, one of the most common reasons behind back pain is the unhealthy sleeping posture caused by an unsuitable mattress. Simply said, your back hurts when you sleep wrong.

So, when it comes to back pain, which option is better: plush or firm?

Heres the deal: while many people note that they experience more pain relief when sleeping on softer mattresses, it all comes down to proper support. When dealing with back pain, you need your spine to remain neutral during the night. This will help reduce tension from the vertebrae, support the natural curves of your back, and keep it relaxed.

An overly soft mattress would prevent that by allowing too much sinkage in the hip area. And an overly firm bed wont be suited either. It would distort the natural position of your spine.

In this video, Dr. Travis Stork explains that a proper mattress is supposed to support your body weight while allowing for just enough give to keep the natural alignment of the spine:

So, concerning the plush vs firm mattress debate, Dr. Stork is leaning towards firmer beds rather than soft mattresses.

Heres the kicker: your bed doesnt have to be brick-firm. In fact, it is recommended to find a good balance between firmness and cradling, which a quality medium-firm mattress could offer .

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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.

Which Mattress Sleeps Cooler Medium Or Firm

Difference Between Plush and Firm Mattress

Firm mattresses allow for more airflow and usually offer more cooling power than others. They let you sleep on top of the bed rather than conforming to your curves as closely as other mattresses. This lift helps keep more of your body exposed to the air, allowing you to sleep cooler.

If you are a hot sleeper, you can also purchase a cooling mattress with features designed to reduce night sweats and overheating.

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Making The Final Decision

Finding a comfortable mattress should be much easier once youve chosen a firmness level that suits your needs. When shopping in retail locations, keep in mind that a showroom shopping experience might not necessarily be a good indicator for which firmness level you require. Thats because floor model mattresses are often already broken in and will feel softer than a brand new mattress. New mattresses, particularly ones made with high density foam, can take up to 30 days to break in. On the other hand, shopping for a mattress with a good online retailer will provide you with a sleep trial, a break-in period, and any additional information youll need to find a mattress that youll love for years.

Too Soft For Heavy Sleepers

While medium mattresses are perfect for people with regular needs, it certainly doesn’t work for people over 250 pounds who have extreme mattress firmness needs.

People who are on the extreme end of the weighing scale need something firm enough to hold their constant body pressure and medium-firm mattresses aren’t very good at it.

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Who Should Sleep On A Soft Mattress

Soft mattresses are best for side sleepers and petite sleepers . Soft mattresses provide enough cushioning to protect side sleepers hips and shoulders from pain. These mattresses also offer enough compression to contour to smaller sleepers shapes.

Theyre typically also the best mattresses for kids since childrens smaller frames require more compression and cradling.

Medium Vs Firm Mattress: Which Is Better

What’s the Difference? Firm vs Plush vs Pillow Top Mattresses!

Sleeping on mattresses that offer no real support can make every night a battle. From body support to comfort, extra soft mattresses fall short in every criteria compared to firm mattresses. But on the other hand, sleeping on a mattress that’s way too firm isn’t comfortable either.

Medium vs firm mattresses have their perks. So today, let’s find out which of these is perfect for you.

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Firm Vs Medium Mattress: What’s Best For You

You may wonder which mattress option is best for you: firm vs. medium. After all, you spend about a third of every day in bed, so its important to find a mattress that feels comfortable and provides the right level of support.

Getting your mattress firmness right could be just the thing to help you get the most restful sleep. Well take a look at how mattress firmness is measured and the pros and cons of each firmness level.

Is A Soft Mattress Ever A Good Option

Yes! Depending on your sleep style and body type, soft mattresses can be a wonderful option. For instance, if youre a lightweight side sleeper who doesnt get enough compression from a medium mattress to cushion your pressure points or if you prefer extra cradling while you sleep, soft mattresses might be up your alley. A mattress that comes in around 3 or 4 on the firmness scale may compress enough to give you the cradling you crave and help you avoid pain in your shoulders and hips.

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Too Harsh On Lightweight Sleepers

We usually don’t recommend sleeping on super soft mattresses, not unless those are the only ones that are comfortable for your body weight. Your weight is an essential criteria for choosing a mattress. Lightweight sleepers need a super soft base that automatically contours their body without them exerting much pressure.

Who Should Choose A Soft Mattress

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  • Side sleepers. Anyone who sleeps on their side wants to find a mattress that will relieve pressure on their shoulders and hips. Soft mattresses usually feature superior pressure relief, so side sleepers should keep that in mind.
  • People with pain issues. Soft mattresses can be a good match for those who struggle with joint or hip pain. A soft mattress with memory foam can reduce and alleviate the pain felt in those areas.
  • Those who like to sink into their mattress. Soft mattresses really allow sleepers to sink into the mattress. Anyone who prefers to sleep in their mattress should prefer a soft mattress.
  • Couples. Softer mattresses, especially those that feature memory foam, handle motion transfer better than firm mattresses. When one partner moves around on the mattress, they have less of a chance of disturbing the other partner on a soft mattress.

Check out the best soft mattresses, or see our top plush mattress pick below:

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Advantages Of A Soft Mattress

A softer mattress is usually recommended for those who are experiencing back pain on a standard mattress, or those who have pre-existing back problems. Theyre also recommended for lighter individuals as a harder mattress can end up not compressing for them at all.

Softer mattresses are generally better for those who sleep on their side, as they better cushion the shoulders and hips. On the side, a softer mattress better aligns the spine, too.

Plush Vs Firm Mattresses For Arthritis

Now, many shoppers believe that a plush mattress would be ideal for arthritis and tender joints. After all, it would gently hug the painful pressure points instead of crashing into them and causing pressure accumulation.

But heres the deal:

Even for those with arthritis or painful pressure points, an overly soft mattress can be more of an enemy than a friend. The thing is, a plush mattress wont be likely to support ones back properly. Instead, it would allow the heavier body parts to sink in. And this usually leads to a strain on ones spine and thus, pain.

Thats why arthritis patients dont necessarily have to go with the plushiest mattress available. Instead, they should pick a model based on their sleeping style. And if its a firm mattress, perhaps it would come in handy to choose something that has some padding on top to cushion the painful pressure points .

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Do They Have Mattresses With Adjustable Firmness

Yes! With recent developments in mattress technology, theres been an explosion of new adjustable mattresses, including beds with adjustable chambers and others with customizable layers. These mattresses usually have a high range of firmness levels.

Adjustable air mattresses work by using internal air chambers and a hose attachment to remove or add air to the support layer based on your preferences. Mattresses with customizable firmness allow you to add and remove layers to change up the beds feel. You can also adjust any mattress firmness with a mattress topper.

How Much Should I Spend On A Mattress

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How much you spend on a mattress will depend on several factors like the mattress brand, mattress size, and mattress type. Here is a breakdown of what you can expect to spend based on the size of your mattress:

  • Twin and Twin XL Mattresses: $400-$600
  • Full and Queen Mattresses: $600-$1,000
  • King and California King: $1,000-$2,000

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How Can I Make My Existing Mattress Softer Or Firmer

There are a few things you can do to adjust the firmness of your existing mattress without buying a new one. One of the best ways to make a mattress firmer is by adding a firm mattress topper. Contrary to a lot of peoples belief that mattress toppers are only to soften a mattress, there are a lot of really good mattress topper options to add lift and firmness to your bed.

You can also try replacing your bed frame slats, sliding a bunky board between your bed base and mattress, flipping your mattress , or switching out your old box springs for a mattress foundation.

Regardless of whether you want to add firmness to your mattress, it might be a good idea to replace your box springs with a foundation anyway. The coils inside box springs lose their tension over time, leading to sagging in your mattress. Box springs also arent rigid enough to support heavier mattresses like memory foam and latex.

Cons Of Plush Mattress

  • While most sleepers enjoy the soft, comforting feel, others may find it claustrophobic.
  • And since it is way too soft, heavier individuals may sink too low, jeopardizing their spinal alignment.
  • And all-foam mattresses consist of thick foam layers, such as memory foam or latex foam. Therefore, they tend to trap heat due to their close contouring to the body.

However, do plush mattresses last longer? The answer would be no, they don’t they tend to deteriorate faster, thus having a shorter lifespan than those with firmer material. And contrary to their durability, plush mattresses tend to get pricey.

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The Difference Between Mattress Support And Firmness Levels

It’s important to keep in mind that mattress firmness and mattress support are not the same things.

Mattress firmness levels mainly determine the softness of a mattress, while support determines how well a mattress can support your pressure points throughout the night.

To be supportive, a mattress doesn’t need to be firm. A medium-firm mattress can still be supportive enough if its bottom layers provide enough support for your specific body type.

A mattress with low support may cause lower back pain, sinkage, and a lower level of durability. On the other hand, a mattress with higher support levels can help with pressure relief and overall benefit the quality of your sleep.

Its The Perfect Balance Between Comfort And Back Support

Is a Firm or Medium Mattress Better: Mattress Firmness

Youve probably heard about how firm mattresses are great for your back, and that soft mattresses are more comfortable in general. While his is true, you need to bear in mind that there is a happy medium.

After all, sleeping on a very firm mattress might be great for your back but if you feel like youre sleeping on the floor, youre not going to get very comfortable sleep.

And this is true on the other side too. If your mattress is amazingly soft and comfortable, but offers few to no support for your back, you might end up with back problems.

So, what you need is the golden mean. Medium firm mattress offer the right balance between comfort and back support.

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The Revive Blue Springs Medium

What it is: Featuring the same innovative comfort technologies as the Gel Springs, the Revive Blue Springs Medium also boasts a 9 Series Nested Wrapped Coil System for even more spring support.

Why it works: Perfect for the back or stomach sleeper who prefers a denser mattress, the Revive Blue Springs offers Revives most advanced system of individually nested coils for superior support without losing a balanced, medium-firm feel.

Pros Of A Firm Mattresses

The word firm might be a turnoff for some, but firm mattresses can provide an amazingly comfortable nights sleep. Theyre great for heavier than average individuals who may experience too much sinkage on a soft mattress. Durability also tends to increase in correlation with mattress firmness, as premature sagging isnt usually an issue. Back and stomach sleepers tend to find greater support in medium-firm and firm varieties thanks to the even sleeping surface these mattresses provide.

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Benefits & Drawbacks Of Firm Mattresses

Firm mattresses have many benefits and support is chief among them. Firm mattresses are more supportive than soft mattresses and hold up the body, rather than letting it sink in too far. Lying on a firm mattress, most people will feel like they are sleeping on top of the mattress, and they should have no real issues moving around on the mattress.

This also makes firm mattresses cooler than soft mattresses. Lying more on top of the mattress, more of the body is exposed to the air that is moving around in the bedroom.

However, while firm mattresses offer great support, they arent the best when it comes to pressure relief. Side sleepers might feel some serious pressure on their shoulders and hips when they lie on a firm mattress. Also, while comfort is subjective, many people dont find firm mattresses to be as comfortable.

Can I Use A Mattress Topper To Change Firmness Levels

Firm vs Soft Mattress – Which One Should You Get?

You can, but its a lot easier to go softer than go firmer. Plush mattress toppers can easily add cradling and contouring to an overly firm mattress. All you have to do is lie the topper over the comfort layer and put the sheet top of both of them.

Firming up your mattress can be a little more complicated because support comes from the mattresss core and not its top layer. Firm toppers can help add a firmer feel to the top of your mattress.

But if you want to shore up support, you may need to combine a firm topper with sturdier support under your mattress. Try a bunkie board or swap your box springs for a mattress foundation or platform bed.

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How Can You Tell If Your Mattress Is The Wrong Firmness

If you constantly wake up tired, in pain, or are unable to get comfortable and fall asleep at night, your mattress might be the incorrect firmness for you. If you know your mattress is getting old, it mightve softened up with time and gotten lumpy, meaning its no longer properly supporting you. A bed that’s grown too soft or too firm is one of the major signs it’s time to replace a mattress.

Whats The Best Mattress Of 2022

The best mattress for you will depend on your support needs. However, memory foam beds tend to rate the highest in terms of customer satisfaction. Memory foam beds contour to the curves of the body and provide instant pressure relief. Plus, this material is responsive enough to reform to the shape of your body as you change positions throughout the night. This combination makes memory foam the ideal choice for those with back pain and arthritis.

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