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.
When Should I Replace My Mattress
Mattresses typically last 7-10 years, but how often you should replace your mattress depends on the type of mattress you have.
- Latex Mattresses: Latex mattresses hold their shape and stay comfortable the longest, lasting up to 15 years.
- Memory Foam Mattresses: Memory foam mattresses also have good longevity, lasting up to 10 years.
- Innerspring Mattresses: Innersprings have a coil system with a life span of up to seven years.
- Hybrid Mattresses: Hybrids that combine innerspring coils with foam have a generous life span of up to 10 years.
Keep in mind that rotating your mattress regularly has a significant impact on how long it lasts. Forgetting to rotate your mattress will cause uneven wear that can create lumps and sagging or hammocking.
Lightweight And Average Sleepers
Lightweight sleepers and average sleepers will also find a medium mattress comfy. A medium mattress is a better option for average sleepers because it is unresponsive enough to prevent sinking and sagging.
A plus-sized sleeper may still feel a bit of sinking on a medium bed. We recommend that plus-sized sleepers choose a medium-firm to firm mattress for more comfortable sleep.
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Does My Mattress Need A Box Spring
Innerspring mattresses are the only mattress type that needs a box spring. The thick coils act as shock absorbers and ensure an evenly supported mattress. Other mattress types, including memory foam, latex, and hybrids, dont need a box spring and perform well on a flat or slatted surface, like a mattress foundation.
Is A Firm Mattress Better
Theres a longstanding myth that a firm mattress is better for your back, but some research has found that medium to medium-firm mattresses provide more relief for people with chronic, nonspecific lower back pain.
Theres no single ideal option when it comes to mattress firmness. The best mattress for you depends on factors like your sleep position, body size, health needs, and personal preferences.
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Plush Vs Medium Mattress: What Is The Difference
By Geoff McKinnenCertified Sleep Coach
One of the most important factors that can make or break a good nights sleep is the firmness of your new mattress. The right firmness can cradle your body perfectly
One of the most important factors that can make or break a good nights sleep is the firmness of your new mattress. The right firmness can cradle your body perfectly to cushion pressure points and offer you spinal support.
In contrast, the wrong firmness can put pressure on your joints or allow your spine to fall out of whack. This mismatch can cause joint pain and back pain. It can also put a serious damper on your sleep quality and quantity.
The good news is with a little research, you can be sure youre picking the right firmness for your comfort level. Below, well talk about two of the most popular firmnesses on the market: plush and medium. Well discuss who should be sleeping on these firmness levels and whether or not theyre right for you.
Arent Soft Mattresses More Comfortable
Honestly, when most people say soft what they mean is contouring. Conventional styles of mattress didnt have much contouring, so your body conformed to the shape of the bed and not the other way around. Soft style mattresses just had springs that were more giving. Since they were linked together, you tended to sink in a connected line instead of in individual spots.
That may have felt comfortable for a while, but again, you were still conforming to the mattress instead of the other way around.
Mattresses now have contouring layers on top that give way directly underneath your widest parts, but fill in around the spaces in your lower lumbar region or torso. At a certain point, they reach the support layer which pushes back. Your spine stays in a straight line, but you dont experience dead arms.
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So Whatre The Benefits Of Sleeping On A Medium
- Theyre great for handling lower back pain Firm and plush mattresses dont provide the essential spinal support compared to medium-firm mattress, the research The medium mattress gives a perfect balance, promoting the natural body posture that will recover inflamed muscles and tissues.
- They provide extra support for back sleepers If you sleep on your back more than in other positions, you will enjoy a lot more comfort and a healthier sleep cycle.
- More balanced temperature Medium mattresses are better at distributing heat across the mattress and regulating temperature compared to soft mattress.
- Better edge support Good edge support means the ability to sit, lay, and move in your bed without falling off the bed, theres also a better motion control.
- It alleviates stress There are various research studies conducted over the quality of sleeping on a medium mattress. The conclusion is that proper spinal alignment and night rest make for the alleviation of stress.
- Reduces bed sores If youre bed-bound sleeping in a neutral position helps alleviates bed sores and reduce pressure points.
Check Out Saatva’s Collection Of High
If you’re in the market for a new bed, Saatva has some of the best medium-firm mattresses out there. From our Saatva Classic to our Loom & Leaf Memory Foam to our Zenhaven Latex Mattress, we’ve got options for everyoneno matter what your sleep preferences are.
If you’re still unsure which of our products is the best mattress for you, take our online mattress quiz to discover which Saatva bed is the perfect match for you.
Take advantage of our standard 180-night sleep trial and industry-leading warranty so you can make sure you’re getting a good night’s sleep before committing to a mattress.
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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.
Does Material Impact Mattress Firmness
Material can impact the feel but not firmness. This is because all types of mattresses come in a range of firmness levels. Firmness isnt determined by material but by construction. That means whether you have a memory foam mattress, a hybrid, or an innerspring mattress, you can get the firmness you want.
For example, to create a soft mattress, manufacturers will add more layers of foam or other cushioning materials for more plushness. To create a firmer mattress, manufacturers simply take away the plush materials and either substitute firmer materials or leave less cushioning between your body and the support core.
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How Do They Make A Mattress Softer Or Firmer
Modifying the top or comfort layer of the mattress is just one way manufacturers adjust mattress firmness. Comfort layers are made softer in a number of ways: adding pillow tops, stuffing them with materials like cotton or wool, or using a sheet of foam or latex. Subtracting these cushioning materials or using thinner layers will make the mattress firmer. In addition, mattress manufacturers add and subtract layers and modify the ILD of the base foam to give their beds unique feels.
How To Choose Your Mattress Firmness
As you shop for a new bed, you will need to decide if you need a plush vs. a firm mattress. The mattress firmness levels are comfort terms used to communicate how something feels it does not indicate the quality of support a mattress will provide you. Determining the right support for your body, size, and shape is an important first step. A comfortable mattress will help you fall asleep quicker, while the support system will keep you from tossing and turning or waking up in pain.
Your body composition plays a huge role in how a mattress will feel and perform for you. Unfortunately, its not as simple as knowing that you like a soft or firm mattress. You need to consider the support level your body needs and how the comfort level will play a role in improving your quality of sleep.
Plush vs. Firm Mattress
A plush mattress has a softer feel. This is achieved by adding layers of pressure-relieving materials on top of the support core or by varying the thickness and density of the padding. These layers contour to your hips and shoulders, cradling your body throughout the night. Sleepers often describe this feel as if theyre sleeping in or getting hugged by their bed. Plush mattresses are a great option for side sleepers.
Medium vs. Plush Mattress
Medium vs. Firm Mattress
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What Does One Firmness Fits All Mean
One firmness fits all is a phrase used to describe the type of firmness which is going to suit the wide majority of sleepers. The truth is that about 80% of sleepers would prefer a bed which ranges between 5 and 7 on the firmness scale.
With this in mind, it would be appropriate to assume that 6 out of 10 is the metric that the majority of people would be looking forward to.
Some would argue that there is no such thing and that the one size fits all approach is particularly inappropriate in this regard. This might actually be true, but the wide majority of people truly prefer a medium feel brought by their mattress.
There are a few different examples on the market which would target this particular firmness level only to accommodate the ever so growing market.
However, we strongly suggest that you check the bed first and make sure that it is integral and reliable. The firmness is undoubtedly a critical characteristic, but there are other important considerations that youd have to account for.
While people tie firmness with support immediately, there are different types of beds. Those who use lower-quality materials, for instance, might be firm and yet fail to deliver the necessary support. Thats definitely something that you ought to consider when youre making the decision.
Why Does My Back Hurt After Waking Up
If you experience back pain and a stiff lower back every morning, which fades during the day, your mattress could be the problem. A bed with a visible sag lacks support for the spine, increasing pressure and the likelihood of back pain. Sleeping on the wrong mattress firmness level can also cause back pain. For instance, side sleepers need a softer mattress for optimal cushioning in the shoulders, or else they feel shoulder pain because their body weight is resting on their shoulder.
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Can Help Relieve Back Pain
If you suffer from back pain, your mattress can literally make or break your sleep. When it comes to mattress firmness specifically, a survey of 268 people from Harvard Health Publishing suggests people with lower back pain sleep best on a medium-firm mattress.
Medium-firm mattresses are great for people with back pain. They contour to your body, giving cushion while still supporting pressure points along your back and neck throughout the night.
Suitable For Side And Combination Sleepers
When resting on your side, the heaviest parts of the body, the hips and shoulders, bear the brunt of the body weight. If the bed is too firm, pressure can build up in near these areas causing tension and pain. Also, if the bed doesnt offer enough give, the spine may be forced to curve, which causes the back muscles to tense. However, a mattress that is too soft can also cause excessive sinking, which forces the spine out of alignment. A medium is the best mattress for side sleeping because it provides the right amount of firmness to keep the hips and shoulders lifted and cushioned.
Combination sleepers tend to change positions throughout the night, so they need a firmness that will keep the spine neutral and pressure points cushioned when resting on their side or back. The comfort and stability of a medium bed makes them ideal for those who frequently change sleep positions.
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Best Mattress Of 2021
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If youre shopping for a mattress online, you may be struggling to decide which is the best one for you. There are a ton of options to choose from, and its not always easy to know which mattresses are truly the cream of the crop.
Weve done the research and testing on thousands of mattresses, whittling them down to our favorites to simplify the process for you. Our team of mattress experts has years of experience directly testing these beds, and draws upon thorough background in different mattress construction, materials, and innovations. We also incorporate the experiences of a diverse group of sleepers on our testing team as well as a battery of tests and technologies to evaluate how different mattresses feel and perform for all different types of people.
Should Side Sleepers Choose A Medium Or Soft Mattress
Side sleepers will feel comfortable on medium and soft mattresses. Medium mattresses may offer a bit more support for sleepers who weigh more than 130 pounds. Medium beds are soft enough to cushion your shoulders to prevent pressure from building up. Soft mattresses offer this as well, but they can sometimes cause heavier sleepers to sink into their beds.
Side sleepers can also go with a medium-soft or medium-plush mattress for an in-between feel.
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Benefits Of A Medium Firm Mattress
Here are some cases when you might want to go with a medium firm mattress:
- You move around while you sleep. If you tend to switch positions during the night between sleeping on your side and your back, a medium firm mattress might work well for you. Side sleepers require a soft enough mattress that provides enough cushion to cradle their hips and shoulders, while back sleepers need a firmer surface. If you’re one of those people who switch between the two positions often, a medium firm mattress will provide an optimal middle ground.
- You’re of light to average weight. People who are lighter generally need softer sleeping surfaces than heavier people to ensure their bodies properly supported. If your sleeping position call for a medium firm to firm mattress and you are a light to average weight, go with a medium firm mattress.
- You sleep with a partner. Sleeping with a partner who has different comfort preferences than you comes with its own challenges. If you want to go firmer and they want to go softer , a medium firm mattress can provide a middle ground and keep you both reasonably comfortableand happy.
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Cons Of A Medium Mattress
While medium mattresses are very beneficial for some individuals, they dont work for everyone. A medium mattress may not be firm enough to support somebody who experiences consistent back pain, as their back may sag and cause their spine to misalign. They may also feel a tad too soft for heavier sleepers since they require sturdier support to resist sinkage and remain resting in comfortable alignment.
Medium Firm Mattresses Are Great For Side Sleepers
So now that you know that medium firm mattresses offer both comfort and back support, lets move on to the net category of people who will sleep great on a medium firm mattress. Side sleepers.
Why Side sleepers? Because when you sleep on your side, you need extra shoulder and hip support. But the mattress also shouldnt be too soft. Otherwise you would end up with an imbalance in the support that the mattress gives for your body.
Research has shown that side sleepers are better off picking a medium firm mattress. And I have found this to be true in personal experience as well.
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