If you have back pain, you know that a good night’s sleep can be hard to come by. You also probably know that a good night’s sleep is the best way to start your day with less back pain. If you’ve been able to find a great mattress for your bed at home, you know how amazing it can be. If you do a lot of travelling that involves hotel stays, though, every check-in can make you dread the coming night.
The overall quality of hotel mattresses generally corresponds to the overall class of the hotel–lower end hotels tend to have cheaper, less comfortable mattresses, and higher end hotels tend to have better mattresses. But better overall mattress doesn’t necessarily equate to best mattress for back pain. Below, you’ll find a few of the things we wanted to know when shopping for the best mattress for people with back pain.
All research led us to conclude that memory foam mattresses seem to offer better overall support, which makes them more comfortable for most users, especially those who suffer from back pain and need a mattress that offers superior support. This higher level of support leads to a more restful night and mornings with less pain.
In addition to offering better support, memory foam mattresses last considerably longer than spring models. Over time, springs develop sags and squeaks. The more time you spend in one spot or position, the sooner the springs in that area will wear out. This wear means that there is less support and comfort, leading to lest restful nights, which can mean achier mornings. In memory foam mattresses, air is displaced when you lie down. This air moves from one section of the mattress to another, but is not lost. When you change positions, the air simply gets redistributed, allowing the foam to retain its shape and support. Most memory foam mattresses will last at least 20 years, whereas most spring models should be replaced after eight. In the long-term, this can represent a definite cost savings, making memory foam a better investment.
When it comes to all-around comfort, memory foam generally outperforms springs. In addition to being sold with different firmness levels (which is also true of spring models), many memory foam models also offer optional pillow tops, making them even more customizable for different users without compromising the support they offer.
Another reason we chose memory foam over spring models is that memory foam models don’t need to be rotated and flipped regularly to control wear, unlike spring mattresses. Because of their construction, memory foam models hold their shape better, longer. If a memory foam mattress is used regularly by someone who is exceptionally large, very occasional rotation might be warranted, but this is generally not the case with the highest-quality models.
Once upon a time, memory foam mattresses had the drawback, which was significant for many, of retaining or even generating more heat than spring models. Today, many manufacturers have adopted new and better airflow and gel bead technology that enables memory foam mattresses to stay cooler and even redistribute body heat, leading to a level of coolness that rivals spring-based versions.
Helping minimize allergy symptoms is another area in which memory foam surpasses springs. Spring mattresses harbor dust mites and allow other body soil to settle into the mattress. Memory foam models do not, making them less prone to holding onto various allergens. For added protection from the body soil that inevitably comes from repeated use, we like using impervious mattress covers that can be easily vacuumed between guests.
If you suffer from evening back pain that’s relieved by a good night’s sleep or morning back pain that results from a poor night’s sleep, it can still be hard to find hotels with mattresses that work for you. Before you make your next reservations, make a few phone calls to prospective hotels and ask them what, if any, mattresses they have that are designed for back-pain sufferers. While many hotels don’t offer back-friendly memory foam in all of their rooms, many will have at least a few such beds available on request.
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