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Mattress Firmness - The Goldilocks Dilemma

Updated: Aug 8, 2023


Mattress firmness can play a significant role in your quality of sleep and overall health, so it’s crucial to select a mattress with the right level of firmness to suit your needs. The term firmness refers to how soft or hard the mattress feels. Firmness should not be confused with support; the firmness of a mattress is largely determined by the upper comfort layers, and the support is determined by the inner support core. Firmness and support are related, but not interchangeable; a soft mattress can still be supportive and a firm mattress can still lack in adequate support. Following is some general guidance on different mattress firmness levels, but it is important to remember that the ideal mattress firmnesses will vary depending on an individual’s preferences and needs.


1. Soft Mattresses:

Soft mattresses are typically recommended for those who sleep on their sides or prefer a plush and cozy sleeping surface. Benefits of soft mattresses include:

  • Reduced pressure points: Soft mattresses conform to the body's natural curves, which can help alleviate pressure points that can cause discomfort and pain.

  • Improved circulation: Soft mattresses can help improve blood flow by allowing the body to sink in to the mattress, reducing the pressure on the circulatory system.

  • Reduced motion transfer: Softer mattresses tend to absorb motion, making them ideal for couples or those who share a bed.


2. Medium Mattresses:

Medium mattresses are often recommended for combination sleepers (those who sleep various positions throughout the night), as they provide a balance of comfort and support. Benefits of medium mattresses include:

  • Proper spinal alignment for combination sleepers: Medium mattresses can help keep the spine in a neutral position, which can prevent back pain and improve posture.

  • Better support: Medium mattresses provide more support than soft mattresses, which can help prevent sagging and prolong the life of the mattress.

  • Good for combination sleepers: Medium-firm mattresses can be comfortable for those who switch between sleeping on their back, side, and stomach.



3. Firm Mattresses:

Firm mattresses are typically recommended for those who sleep on their stomachs or those who simply prefer a more rigid sleeping surface. Benefits of firm mattresses include:

  • Proper spinal alignment for stomach sleepers: a firm mattresses can help keep a stomach sleeper’s spine in a neutral position, which can prevent back pain and improve posture.

  • Improved circulation: Firm mattresses can help improve blood flow by reducing pressure points and allowing for better circulation.

  • Good for heavier individuals: Firm mattresses provide more support for those who are heavier, which can help prevent sagging and maintain the shape of the mattress over time.

It's important to remember that the benefits of different mattress firmnesses can vary depending on a person’s personal preferences and needs. It is recommended to try out many mattresses with different firmness levels to find the one that works best for you.


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