What a difference a mattress can make. When you find the right mattress you can go from waking up tired and sore to feeling refreshed and ready to take on the world. But what if you are a side sleeper? Is there a best mattress for side sleepers out there? We will give you our recommendations for some of the best mattresses for side sleepers and some tips for choosing that best mattress.
What to Look for in the Best Side Sleeper Mattresses
It’s not uncommon for people to sleep on their sides. In fact, some studies have shown that an overwhelming majority of people prefer to sleep on their sides. With 70+% of us being side sleepers it seems that more people should be looking for the best mattresses for side sleepers. Here are some things to take into consideration as you do your research.
Type of Mattress
Sleeping on your side produces the most pressure points while sleeping. If you think about it, your body weight is being supported by a narrow portion of your body, so it does make sense. We will take a look at some different types of beds for side sleepers and give an overview on each.
Memory Foam – A good memory foam mattress is often the go-to choice of many side sleepers. Why is this? Well, memory foam does a very good job of conforming to your body shape and supporting those contours. This becomes especially important for side sleepers because of the many contours of our bodies while sleeping on the side. Memory foam definitely helps reduce pressure points on your body.
So when you think about it from this point of view a memory foam mattress does seem like a logical choice as being one of the best for side sleepers. And we definitely think a high-quality memory foam mattress is a formidable option.
But what if you are one of those people who really does not like the feeling of memory foam? Maybe you have experienced feeling trapped or stuck in your memory foam mattress. Or maybe you don’t like the idea of synthetic foam because of toxins.
We all need to remember that mattresses are not one size fits all. What seems perfect for one may not be right for someone else. So the bottom line is that a memory foam could be the best mattress for some side sleepers, but it’s definitely not for everyone.
Hybrid – A hybrid mattress is just one that is made from two or more dissimilar materials. These mattresses will oftentimes have a coil spring base with various materials for the top layers to fit your individual need and comfort level.
Should you consider a hybrid mattress in your quest for the best mattress if you are a side sleeper? The short answer is, yes. A hybrid mattress could certainly be a good choice for side sleepers.
We would recommend one that consists of individually pocketed coils(the more the better). This provides superior support and isolation of movement. Since memory foam is known to contour to your body you could try a hybrid mattress with a memory foam top.
This will help provide the contour and supportive capability of memory foam without some of the drawbacks to memory foam. A hybrid memory foam will not allow you to sink as much, will feel more responsive and will also sleep cooler than an all memory foam bed.
Innerspring – When many of us think of a traditional innerspring mattress it brings thoughts of an old, uncomfortable mattress we slept on as a kid. That’s not the type of innerspring mattress we are referring to here although we have had many nights on those old ones as well.
Today’s innerspring mattresses are very similar to a hybrid mattress and some might say there isn’t really much difference at all. We have found the best innerspring mattresses for side sleepers should have individually pocketed coils so that it can more closely contour to your body for support.
Latex – Latex mattresses have begun making a surge in popularity. They can be a good choice for side sleepers because they do offer similarities to memory foam in terms of contouring capability and support.
Latex is more responsive than memory foam and it also allows for better cooling than memory foam. So if you normally sleep hot or you don’t like the sinking, stuck feeling of memory foam then latex may be a good option for you.
The age old question of how firm a mattress should be never seems to go away. The bottom line is that there is not one single answer to this question. Some of it depends on what position you normally sleep in and some of it is just personal preference.
The heavier you are the more you should be looking more towards a firm mattress. A soft mattress may be fine for a petite person but it will not offer enough support for someone who weighs 200 pounds or more.
At the end of the day you are trying to find a mattress that is going to give you optimal spinal support for when you are sleeping on your side. What that looks like specifically will vary from person to person.
Sleep Trial and Warranty Period
In your search for the best mattress we highly recommend looking at the sleep trial and warranty periods of the mattresses you are looking at. A 100 night sleep trial is quite common and should give you a good idea of whether the mattress is right for you.
It is important to note that you should pay attention to the fine print when reviewing the sleep trial period. Make sure you understand if there are any strings attached and how the process is going to work before you make the purchase.
The same thing holds true when it comes to the mattress warranty. There are often very specific requirements for a mattress to meet the warranty requirements which can sometimes be hard to fulfill. We recommend that you thoroughly understand the warranty requirements and process prior to purchasing the mattress. A mattress is a large and important purchase so doing your research up front is imperative.
We couldn’t talk about the best mattress for side sleepers without at least touching on the topic of price. A mattress is an important purchase and it is a large investment into your health and wellbeing. But this does not mean that you should overpay for your purchase.
We recommend that you do some price comparisons on various brands and keep a close eye out for coupons and discounts that may be available. These can sometimes reduce the cost of your mattress by hundreds of dollars.
The old saying of ‘you get what you pay for’ oftentimes holds true when purchasing a mattress as well. We all love finding a bargain and trying to find the best prices but beware of cheap mattresses.
A cheap mattress may feel OK for a short time but it will likely not last as long and therefore won’t provide you with long term comfort and support. This will only lead to poor sleep habits, frustration and looking for another mattress sooner than you had planned.
Should You Sleep on Your Side?
Sleeping on your back is widely regarded as the best way for a person to sleep. But sleeping on your side seems to be a pretty good option as well. In fact, the Sleep Doctor has dubbed sleeping on your side to be the second most preferable sleep position after sleeping on your back.
If you are someone who snores or has sleep apnea then sleeping on your side may help to reduce your symptoms and allow for a better rest.
Sleeping on your left side may help with digestion and reduce the symptoms of acid reflux. Left side sleeping is also recommended for pregnant women to facilitate blood flow to the placenta.
On the down side, sleeping on your side can lead to more wrinkles so if you are concerned about that it may be something to consider. You may also experience a lack of circulation in your arm depending on how you are sleeping. If you have ever woken up in the night not being able to feel or able to move your arm you know it’s an unpleasant feeling.
Side sleeping does pose some challenges for your mattress, so finding the best mattress for side sleepers does take careful consideration and some research. You will probably even want to look at pillows for side sleeping as well to make sure you’re doing everything you can to ensure a quality night sleep.
The best mattress for side sleepers needs to be able to handle and support many curves and contours while providing you with pressure relief and comfort to last you through each night.
We recommend doing your research and trying to narrow down your top mattress choices. Once you get it down to a few choices based on the features of the mattress you can then look at details such as trial period, warranty and price. Comparing these types of categories may help you make your final decision.
For instance, if many of the features seem similar on two mattresses but one has a better warranty or much lower price then that may push you in one direction or the other.
We hope that this guide can help you in your pursuit for the perfect mattress.