The 3 Main Sleeping Positions: Which is Best?

Disclaimer: Please note that the information provided in this article is for informational purposes only and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical advice.

How To Tell If Your Bed Is Causing Back Pain

Are you one of the many individuals who wake up every morning with a stiff, aching back? Back pain is a common complaint among adults, with an estimated 50-80% experiencing it at some point in their lives. While chronic or severe back pain should be assessed by a medical professional, your mattress might be contributing to that unwelcome morning discomfort. In this blog, we’ll explore the signs that your bed could be causing your back pain and what you can do to alleviate it.

  1. You Wake Up With Back Pain:

The most apparent sign that your mattress might be the culprit is waking up with back pain. If you feel fine when you go to bed but groan and clutch your lower back in the morning, your mattress might be contributing to spine misalignment, leading to discomfort.

  1. You Struggle To Get Comfortable In Bed:

Tossing and turning all night, trying to find a comfortable sleeping position, could be a sign that your mattress isn’t the right fit for you. When you have trouble getting comfortable, it’s an indicator that your mattress might not be providing the support your body needs.

  1. You Wake Up Often at Night:

Frequent awakenings during the night can be attributed to various factors, but if it’s a new or worsening issue for you, consider whether your mattress is giving you the support necessary for a full night’s sleep.

  1. You Feel Like You’re Rolling Off Your Bed:

If it feels like you’re about to roll off the edge of your bed, your mattress might lack proper edge support. This lack of support can contribute to morning pain, as it suggests your mattress structure is deteriorating.

  1. You’re Folded Like a Taco:

Your mattress should not make you feel like a human taco, but if it does, it’s a sign that your mattress is sagging or not providing the support needed for proper spinal alignment.

  1. Your Mattress Is Saggy:

A sagging mattress droops where you need support the most, usually right under your lower back. Mattress sag can result in misalignment and contribute to back pain. Investing in a mattress with proper support features can make a significant difference.

  1. You Feel Like You’re Sleeping On a Board:

There’s a fine line between a supportive mattress and one that’s overly firm. A mattress that’s too hard can force your spine into an unnatural position, creating pressure points and causing discomfort. Your mattress should offer adequate support while allowing your spine to maintain its natural curve.

  1. You’ve Got Things That Go Lump In the Night:

Sleeping on a lumpy mattress is a surefire way to wake up with back pain. While you might be able to temporarily resolve the issue by rotating your mattress or adding a mattress topper, lumps are often a sign that it’s time for a mattress upgrade.

  1. Your Mattress Is Past Its Prime:

Like most things in life, mattresses have a lifespan. Generally, you should consider replacing your mattress every 7-10 years, depending on the type and quality of the mattress you have. An old mattress can contribute to morning pain.

  1. You Don’t Feel Rested When You Wake Up:

Quality sleep should leave you feeling refreshed in the morning. If you’re waking up feeling tired and unrested, it’s worth considering whether your mattress is preventing you from getting a good night’s sleep.

  1. Your Back Pain Fades After Waking:

If your morning back pain tends to subside after some stretching and a hot shower, your mattress could be a contributing factor. However, if your back pain persists throughout the day, it’s essential to consult a healthcare professional to rule out other potential causes.

What Firmness Is Best for Back Pain?

There’s a common myth that you need a firm mattress to get the best support for your spine. But firmness and support aren’t the same thing.

Firmness relates to how much you sink into your mattress.

Support relates to how well your mattress supports your spine to keep it aligned.

So, does that mean that mattress firmness doesn’t matter? It’s not quite that simple. Let’s take a look at the differences between soft and firm mattresses.

Soft Mattress

Is a soft mattress bad for your back? It is if it’s so soft that it doesn’t support your spine. If you sink into the mattress so that your hips are lower than your shoulders, your mattress may be too soft and could be contributing to back pain.

Keep in mind that weight is a factor when it comes to mattress firmness. The heavier a person is, the more likely they are to sink into a too-soft mattress.

Firm Mattress

Can a hard mattress cause back pain? Although people used to believe that a very firm mattress was the best thing for a bad back, research doesn’t agree.

One double-blind study tested participants who experienced low back pain while in bed, on waking, and throughout the day. The participants who slept on a firm mattress had worse outcomes after 90 days than those who slept on a medium-firm mattress.

Does that mean that firm mattresses are always bad for back pain? Once again, weight is important. The heavier someone is, the firmer their mattress may need to be to provide the right level of support for their spine.

Best Mattress Firmness for Back Pain

For many people, a medium-firm mattress is the best choice for reducing back pain.

One small study tracked the sleep quality of adults with lower back pain. After tracking the participants’ sleep quality for 21 days on their own mattresses, they were given medium-firm mattresses with foam and latex layers. After 12 weeks, the participants had progressively less back pain and stiffness.

Your mattress’s firmness may not be right for you if lying on it causes your spine to become misaligned. Look at it this way:

  • Your mattress is too soft if your hips sink lower than your shoulders.
  • Your mattress is too firm if your hips and shoulders lie flat on the surface.
  • Your mattress is just right if your mattress contours to your body shape and keeps your spine aligned.

Looking for a mattress that’s just right? Ruby Mattress has thoughtfully designed mattresses at every price point, so you can say sayonara to nighttime back pain without breaking the bank.

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