A good mattress means a lot more than a better night of sleep. Selecting a mattress that fits your needs means finding one that is both comfortable and able to properly support your spine while you sleep. Like any part of the body, your spine is subject to stress and wear every day (1). This wear can lead to poor posture, aches, weakness, and imbalance with time (2). With so much of your health and happiness depending on your spine, it is important to take steps to care for your spinal health.
Human beings spend approximately one-third of their lives in bed, so ensuring that those hours are spent caring for your spine is vital. Studies have shown the effect different mattresses have on both quality of sleep and spinal health. Selecting the right mattress for your needs has been shown to improve sleep quality by up to 55% and reduce back pain by 48% (3). Some studies have shown evidence that an improperly designed mattress can actually create symptoms of back pain in individuals (3). Therefore, finding the mattress that works for you is more than just a monetary investment, it is an investment in your spinal health.
The lower back and neck are two of the most common areas to experience pain as the body ages. This is due to the fact that the spine’s main purpose is to bear the weight of the body as it moves, twists, and bends (4). Muscle strain from these movements needs proper rest to allow the body to recover. Not allowing for the muscle fiber to rest and recover can lead to muscle spraining and inflammation. While resting, it is important that the mattress provides the body with enough support to allow for those hard-working back and neck muscles to relax without needing to bear any weight while they recover.
A healthy spine is not only a spine free of aches and pains. A healthy spine allows for free movement and leads to improved posture over a lifetime (5). Approximately 80% of adults report lower back pain during their lifetime. Back pain is the most frequent cause of limited activity in adults under the age of 45. With that knowledge, it appears as if back pain is inevitable. That couldn’t be further from the truth. The path to a healthy spine starts with a good night’s sleep. In addition, stretching and maintaining an active lifestyle will improve spinal health and even quality of sleep (5).
Beyond the physical support offered by a mattress, more relaxed nights of sleep have been shown to increase cognitive abilities while reducing stress. A reduction in stress-levels has been shown to also help relieve tension in the back and neck muscles, a leading cause of morning aches and muscle stiffness (3). In addition, reduced stress-levels are associated with increased cognitive and motor performance, social interactions, mood, and overall quality of life.
With so much riding on a good night’s sleep, investing in a mattress that fits your needs is an obvious necessity. While there are endless options available, finding the right doctor approved mattress that supports your spine will lead to improvements with both your physical and mental well-being. Technology has come a long way from the traditional spring mattresses of the past. Today’s memory foam and hybrid mattresses offer customers more options when selecting the mattress that best meets their needs. With the advent of mattress in a box selections, it has never been easier to find the best mattress to support your spine and lead to a better, healthier night’s sleep.