Choosing A Bed For Back Pain

It’s estimated that around 80% of us will suffer from back pain at least once in our lives. If you’ve ever endured the agony of a bad back, you’ll know the right bed can make all the difference, not only to your sleep, but to your general wellbeing too.

However, choosing the right bed to alleviate back pain can be somewhat of a minefield; as doctors, chiropractors, orthopaedic specialists and mattress manufacturers will all have varying recommendations.

At TJ Warehouse Direct, we’re often asked for recommendations on the best beds for back pain. As we all know, not all back pain is created equal. We all feel pain in different areas of our back, at different intensities and at different times, so unfortunately there’s no one-size-fits-all mattress which solve the problem.

That said, there are some measures you can take when choosing your bed or mattress to ensure you find something that works for you.

Here are our top tips for choosing a bed or mattress when you suffer from back pain

  1. Find A Balance Between Comfort And Support

We often hear that firm mattresses are best if you suffer from a bad back as they offer greater support. But that’s not a hard and fast rule. While it is important to sleep on a mattress that adequately supports your spine, if your bed feels as stiff as a board, your body will be tense. If you’re unable to sleep comfortably this will just exacerbate the problem.

Hard mattresses can also create greater pressure on the parts of the body that come into contact with the bed and cause pain when you’re getting in and out of bed.

So don’t just run straight for the hard mattresses because someone once told you they’re best. All back problems are unique to the sufferer, so you have to find a mattress and bed that strikes a perfect balance between support and comfort for you. Mattresses that err on the firmer side of neutral tend to be a top choice among those who experience back pain as they’re supportive but not soft enough to sag, which is often a main cause of pain.

  1. Consider Your Sleeping Position

When choosing a mattress, it’s important to take your sleeping position into account. If you’re a side sleeper, you’ll need a mattress with enough softness to cushion your shoulders and hips. However, if you sleep on your stomach, which many back pain sufferers do, you’ll need a mattress which is firm enough to keep you afloat.

If you sleep in a range of positions, you should consider a memory foam or gel mattress which is created to support a range of motions and contour to the body accordingly.

Top choice: Arizona Gel Pocket Sprung Mattress

  1. Choose For Your Weight And Height

Your own weight and height are critical factors when choosing a mattress. An 18 stone man who is 5 foot 7 will need a completely different mattress to an 18 stone man who is 6 foot 4. Although both men are the same weight, their height impacts how their weight is distributed when they are lying down and this will influence their choice. The 5 foot 7 man is likely to need a firm mattress, whereas the 6ft 2 man will likely need a medium spring tension, as is weight is more spread out across the bed.

  1. Who Are You Sharing A Bed With?

It’s always a good idea to go mattress and bed shopping with the person you’re sharing a bed with. Their height and weight will also influence the type of mattress you choose.

If you are around three stone heavier than your partner, you may need two separate mattresses within the one cover that support your individual spinal needs.

  1. For Lower Back/ Lumbar Pain

Lower back or lumbar pain is the most common type of back discomfort. For this kind of pain, a mattress that moulds and conforms to your body shape is best. Memory foam, gel or latex mattresses allow your muscles to relax, by giving your body the chance to rest at a natural angle with minimal pressure. As your hips and shoulders sink in, your midsection sits lightly on top – all of your body is supported, with no gaps.

  1. Don’t go bed shopping when you’re tired!

You should never go food shopping on an empty stomach and similarly, you should never go bed shopping when you’re tired, otherwise every single bed will feel comfortable.

If you’re visiting a bed store, give yourself plenty of time to try out each mattress beyond your first impressions. A bed that seems firm and stiff at first, can become incredibly comfortable after a few moments.

At TJ Warehouse we have a number of mattresses that mould from your body heat and will need a few moments to take full effect.


If you suffer from back pain and need to find the perfect mattress or bed, you can give us a call on 028 93351306 or visit our store.