Mattress recommendations for bad backs?

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  • Mattress recommendations for bad backs?
  • Premier Icon Clover

    I had a similar realisation. I’d thought that my back was in terminal decline until I realised that it was fine when I slept on friends’ floors. Scrapped my awful sprung mattress and bought a Waterlattex. All fixed. 😀

    Premier Icon ampthill

    Well I don’t have a bad back and I sleep on a Futon.

    I have had a bad back and I think its a good surface. But it really is pretty solid

    MRS Ampthill chose it with me 16 years ago, to replace our first Futon. Hmm that’s 23 years together on a Futon


    Harrison works for me. Wife gets soft on her side, I get firm on mine.


    I think thin Thermarest type air mattresses are considered ideal for some back issues. memory foam next, Ergoflex or do affordable memory foam mattresses, no personal experience tho. real mine field, as once you buy and use, you can’t really return it, if it’s not right.


    Throw as much money at a mattress as you can possibly afford. A lesson my wife taught me, and I have never regretted it.


    I seem to remember from a thread a few months ago, that a few folks here have a bad back. I also have a bad back (including complete loss of a disc), and it’s usually at its most painful first thing in the morning. I realised while at mountain mayhem last weekend, that I don’t have that same pain after I’ve slept on a camping mat. Clearly, I can’t scrap the bed and expect Mr Pea to sleep on a camping mat for the rest of our lives, but maybe some mattresses are more suited to bad backs than others? We currently have a sprung one, 2 years old, with a sheet of plywood underneath.
    Can anyone with a bad back recommend anything please?

    Premier Icon martymac

    i have had back pain for the past 35 years, every day without fail.
    my mum has the same, so does my daughter.
    last year i bought a memory foam matress and literally overnight my back was about 90% better.
    it is still slightly stiff sometimes in the morning, but rarely now.
    they are chuffin warm though, i will say that.
    we paid about £220 for it, but thats really cheap for the relief it gives.


    I use a super firm mattress and sleep on top of the duvet under a cover. Makes the world of difference too sleeping under the duvet.


    After a herniated disc and weeks sleeping on the floor we went for a half memory foam half traditional construction. It was an absolute revelation. Recently replaced it with a similar one, basically went into the shop and said which is the firmest mattress you have, tried it, bought it! Lovely. By the way it’s a deep one with reinforced edges (less prone to sinking when sat on over time, teenagers gaming was the example given!) so then needed new cover sheets. Go and try is my suggestion.
    Discount beds in Sheffield get my vote but don’t know where you are so might be totally irrelevant. Good luck.



    Interested in thé waterlattex you mentioned

    Are they firm? Do they sag at all in the middle?

    I currently have a memory foam one that’s probably around 6 years old and past it. It has a permanent dip in the middle now. It’s been comfy but hot

    I’m torn between getting a pocket sprung or a latex mattress next

    Premier Icon dknwhy

    Firm memory foam or waterbed. Sprung mattresses are good but never properly mould to the contours of your back.
    Could be pure speculation but I also think that as memory foam and waterbeds are warm it helps sooth the joints.


    We have a water bed from these: –

    Never too hard or too soft as you just add/take out water to suit. They’re heated too so nice to get in on a winters night and you don’t get hot in them in summer. Had it for about 3 1/2 years now and both me and the mrs love it. She suffers with Fibromyalgia and its worked a treat. Just put in a bit of water conditioner each year to stop the water going green and rotting the rubber and you’re good.

    Premier Icon Clover

    Jools – I turn mine quite often. It didn’t get anything resembling a dip until the bf moved in (!) but if I see one starting to form then I turn it and it goes away. It’s also got a summer side which isn’t as warm as the winter side. We rather like the toastie winter side as our cavernous half-renovated house can be a bit chilly!


    We’ve got a memory form mattress, it’s maybe three or four years old and has massive dips where we sleep – the mattress came with instructions not to turn it over. My back is terrible when in get up in the morning. Given that some people are actively recommending memory foam at a point when I am thinking of just getting rid of ours, I wonder if our mattress is a bit shonky. Might have to look for the receipt and guarantee and see what’s what I think

    Premier Icon dknwhy

    I think it’s one thing that you shouldn’t cheap out on.

    We used to own furniture shops and it would amaze me at what people would ask for. They’d have no problem spending thousands on a dining set but would buy the cheapest mattress possible or would expect to get 10-20 years out of a mattress and insist on changing their sofa every two.
    Each to their own I guess but when you spend a quarter to a third of your life in bed, I’d rather spend the extra…..


    I used to have a fairly hard mattress and one of those 1 1/2 mattress topper things on it, for years (4) I thought I was sleeping well, but it seems not. I used to wake aching and just thought it was due to over training or something, used to get most of my pain in my lower back. I tried 1 pillow, 2 pillows, different types of pillow all in the mindset of thinking it was all due to the angle of my head to lower back.
    Seems not.
    I got fed up and pootled over to my local John Lewis and explained my aches and the assistant recommended I try a harder mattress and no topper thingy. I bought one there and then, delivered the next day, I have slept soundly and comfortably ever since.
    I’m amazed that I would need a harder mattress but it seemed I did.

    For the past 3 years I’d been using a mattress that came free with the bed. At first it was fine but this last year it was clearly causing me issues because nights away in hotels , holiday etc I didn’t have the problem to the same degree.

    So I researched this here singletrack for some wisdom and the advice that pointed me to was fantastic.

    I was looking at mattresses in Marks and Spencers the other day. The wording says all the right things but inspecting them you can see they just aren’t the same quality yet more expensive.

    The big issue is whether you are confident to purchase without testing first. However, your perception of a mattress will change, the first night my wife hated our new mattress, said it was too firm but that only lasted one night and she is won over, massively. So I wonder how worthwhile a 2 minute test in a shop really is?

    We relied purely on their advice over the phone and only 2 weeks in my back is without issues. Even after struggling with it up 2 flights of stairs. I should have let the delivery men do that bit! (They did offer).



    We have a 3/4 year old memory foam mattress, and are still very happy with it. We bought it like you, after camping on a air mattress, expecting to be in bits (we both suffer from back aches), but had the best nights sleep for ages…
    I can’t say it will fix your issues, as it didn’t ours, but it did make us a lot more comfortable & stopped aggregating issues we already had.
    As to why we bought it.. we tried lots of beds in the ‘store’ and it was the only one that felt any different to the others (we couldn’t tell any difference between a pocket sprung/open coil/etc) but as soon as we got on the MF we knew we were comfortable.

    Premier Icon gofasterstripes

    Ikea Futon Mattress – Foam and Latex Foam

    Go try this.

    I used to have back problems, until…

    EDIT – I had it on a HARD surface. If you lay it on a mushy bed that I doubt it’d help much.


    Our mattress is memory foam over pocket sprung. Truly amazing to sleep on
    I have a disc missing in lower back and the misses is like the Lenor lady…

    a couple of solutions spring to mind;

    buy an air-filled mattress as this will allow you to find the right level of firmness by changing the air pressure via the built in pump.’Aerobed’ are worth buying from as they include non-PVC mattresses in their range. Downside is that you might find them chilly come wintertime?

    or, to recreate that camping feel, try using ‘gro-bags’ from your garden centre as a mattress. Best to experiment as a single bed at first…find some spare bit of floor in your bedroom and lay the gro bags out according to your height (its best to use the cheap slender gro bags as they tend to be less likely to mould to your shape). Place a camping mat on top of the gro-bags along with your duvet/ pillow and enjoy a futon like comfort at a fraction of the cost.

    The only downside I heard of was from a bloke who used gro-bags to replace the mattress on his girlfriends bed. She practically had a fit, not so much because her favourite mattress had been thrown in the skip but because she believed that he was trying to ‘fertilizer’. 😆

    best of luck…


    Surprised no-one’s mentioned Mammoth Sport Mattresses.

    I’ve got a badly messed up back, MRI shows 2 bulging disks, one of them herniated, along with 2 other dehydrated disks.

    Since buying the entry level Mammoth, back pain has improved majorly. These aren’t memory foam, but are similar in concept. Can’s remember the details, but info is there on their website. Triathlon magazine has a £200 off voucher code in the classifieds at the back.


    Wow, thanks for all the replies, folks!
    Loads of suggestions. I am prepared to throw money at a good mattress. I’ll look through all your suggestions with mr pea and decide what to go for. A hotel with different types of mattress to try out for a couple of nights each would be good!
    Someone also mentioned the bed- we are renting at the moment and the bed frame which looks fairly cheap has slats. When we added our own mattress is was really unsupportive. The sheet of plywood helped but is still not good enough. When we buy our own place we’ll need to consider the bed too.

    Premier Icon niloC

    +1 for memory foam Mammoth mattress

    Premier Icon ampthill

    I currently have a memory foam one that’s probably around 6 years old and past it. It has a permanent dip in the middle now

    I would have a bad back if I slept with in a dip


    I think it’s one thing that you shouldn’t cheap out on.

    got to agree – you spend around a 1/3rd of you life on it, you want to be comfortable.
    We went to a local bed specialist, spent about 2 hours wondering around, shoes off, trying all the mattresses we thought we’d like. TBH, we firmly had ‘foam topped sprung base’ in mind…
    We ended up with a ‘traditional’ Harrison and 2 crazily comfy pillows – kind of like memory foam but firmer and a bit springy… Neither of us has ever slept so well!


    We have had our Temperpedic memory foam mattress for 8 years and no dip has developed so far. It sure has helped Mrs Busydog’s back issues that prevented good sleep on previous mattresses


    if you have back pain due to worst mattress. then change your mattress and buy new mattress from Asia Foam they made mattresses according to human body… to buy this


    Oh that’s clever advertising, first post on the forum. How are beds made according to the human body?

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