If you are a side sleeper, there is no doubt that you are familiar with the aches and pains often associated with the wrong mattress. While back sleepers can and do experience aches and pains from the wrong mattress, these symptoms are more common with side sleepers. Why? Because, as a side sleeper, you have less surface contact with the mattress, which places more weight on your hips and your back than it would if you were a back sleeper.
But don't try to change your sleeping position just yet. Side sleeping is actually very good for you. Not only does side sleeping relieve pressure on your back after a long day of stress (if you have the right mattress, that is). But you are also providing your body with better blood flow and more nutrients while sleeping.
So what's the fix? Finding the right mattress, of course.
What is the right mattress for a side sleeper? According to mattress review experts, the best mattress for a side sleeper is one that provides ample support to the spine while still providing enough comfort that you can fall asleep easily.
How Firm is Too Firm?
Be careful about choosing a mattress that is too firm. The firmness level you choose will depend greatly on your weight, but choosing a mattress too firm for your weight can lead to serious aches and pains. This is because a too-firm mattress will not allow your hips and shoulders to sink into the mattress, which leads to poor spinal alignment.
Outer Layer and Surface
In addition to choosing a mattress that is firm without being too firm, side sleepers should choose a mattress with a soft outer layer and a profiled surface. These features will provide cushioning to the hips and the shoulders without taking away from the support of the mattress' core, resulting in a softer sleeping surface, less pressure on your hips and shoulders and it will make falling asleep much easier.
Don't Forget the Pillow
While choosing your mattress is definitely the biggest part of your mattress shopping decision, it is also important to make sure that you find the right pillow to go with your new mattress. Side sleepers often fail to find a pillow that places their spine in alignment, which can result in neck pain, headaches and more. Some of the best mattress experts suggest memory foam pillows because of their ability to contour to the head while still keeping the neck in proper alignment. However, there are many other contoured pillows available on the market today. Just make sure you choose one that suits your head size.