The National Sleep Foundation recommends adults get somewhere between 7 and 9 hours of sleep per night on a regular basis. One of the ways to achieve this goal and improve your overall health and well-being at the same time is to find the perfect mattress for your sleeping needs. Keep reading to find some tips to help you end your search for the ideal mattress.
Know Your Sleep Position
Are you a side, back, or stomach sleeper? You’ll want to know the answer to this question as you begin your quest for the perfect mattress. This is because your sleeping position affects the level of support you’ll likely prefer. Here are the general recommendations based on sleep position:
- Side sleeping: Medium to soft mattresses can help side sleepers ease pressure around the shoulders and lower hip area.
- Stomach sleeping: Stomach sleepers tend to need a firmer mattress to provide sufficient support in a way that also maintains the spine’s optimal alignment.
- Back sleeping: If you’re a back sleeper, go with what’s comfortable for your body weight and preferred level of comfort since your weight is more evenly distributed in this position.
Consider Your Body Type
Your body type and weight also matters as you search for the perfect sleeping solution. If you have a broader or heavier frame, for instance, a firmer mattress can minimize issues with lower back pain caused by spinal misalignment. Lighter individuals, on the other hand, tend to sleep better on low-profile mattresses. However, plus-size individuals may also benefit from a mattress with a lower profile. Certain mattress materials, like memory foam or latex for example, tend to work well for any body type because of the flexibility and stability such materials offer.
Explore Your Options with a Custom Size Mattress
Despite what you may have seen in some ads, there is no “one size fits all” when it comes to mattresses. And, yes, there are standard mattress sizes that typically include twin, full, king, and queen. But there are times when it makes more sense to go with a custom size mattress instead. This simply refers to a mattress with non-standard dimensions.
As for why you might want to go the customized route, there are many possible reasons. For instance, you might have an antique bed with a frame that won’t accommodate a standard size mattress. You may also benefit from a mattress that’s customized to your preferred size under the following circumstances:
- You need a uniquely-sized mattress for a boat or recreational vehicle (RV)
- You have a customized bed that needs to have a mattress that’s a very specific, non-standard size
- You need a mattress that’s specially sized for a truck
- You need a more specific width or thickness because of personal comfort and support needs
Factor in Any Other Unique Needs You May Have
Customization can also be beneficial if you have existing issues with back or neck pain that are making it difficult for you to catch sufficient Zs each night. Also, look at different materials and designs if you need a mattress that can be adjusted to accommodate both you and your sleeping partner or one that takes pressure off certain muscle groups.
Lastly, go by what’s worked well for you in the past when looking for the perfect mattress. For instance, if you’ve slept fairly well on a firm mattress for many years, you’ll probably appreciate a new mattress that’s also firm and supportive. But if you’ve been having increased difficulty getting a good night’s sleep on your existing mattress, be open to exploring your options with different levels of support, comfort, and customization.