Have you ever woken up with a terrible backache? Sciatica is similar to backaches, but just a few levels above. The sciatic nerve causes intense radiating pain to travel from your back down to your pelvic area and legs. This pain can be on one or both sides of your body and is caused by bone supra, herniated discs, spinal issues such as stenosis and diabetes. Your age, weight, and activity level can further affect this disease.
Morning backaches are often caused by a worn-out mattress that does not match your sleeping needs. Moreover, Sciatica patients require a proper mattress that provides you with the necessary comfort in the form of cushioning and sturdy support. It should perfectly conform to your body without alleviating your pressure points.
Due to the long list of important considerations, we compiled a list of the best mattresses for sciatica to make the buying process slightly easier for you. They are based on extensive research, customer feedback, and our own experience.
Best Mattress For Sciatica
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You can not go on finding mattresses without stumbling upon the famous Casper series. After gaining much support for its Original Mattress, the manufacturers went on to release five more products to attain maximum customer satisfaction. However, the Casper Foam mattress still remains our number one due to its optimal comfort level, a much-needed feature for sciatica patients.
The 12 inch Casper Mattress consists of 4 layers made of latex, memory foam, and high-density polyfoam. The one phrase to describe the mattress after looking at its structure is” luxurious comfort and support”- there’s nothing else one needs in their mattress. Keeping this in mind, it also offers a special Zoned Support Layer that provides focused relief to targeted regions of your body, including your pelvic area, lower back, and legs- the areas most affected by sciatica.
The first layer is the soft polyester cover that is removable; hence, washable. Moreover, it wicks away moisture and provides a soft sleeping surface. The second layer consists of an open-cell foam that feels like latex due to its responsiveness, bouncy nature, and cool surface. It offers excellent mobility, allowing the combination of sleepers to move around easily. However, foam absorbs the movements so your partner won’t feel a thing. The open cell technology has micro ventilation holes for a smooth airflow system.
Beneath this layer, there’s a memory foam section that is slightly less responsive. Therefore, it contours your body curves and lets you sink in while the transitional layer at the bottom limits it from sinking in too deep.
This layer is the most important part of this mattress as it consists of the zoned support; it is divided into a soft, pressure relief layer and a firm, lifting layer. They work together to support the different areas of your body in a gentle way. Lastly, the base layer has a heavy-duty poly foam to form the shape of the mattress.
The firmness of the Casper Mattress is somewhere around 5.5 – 7.5; the firmness might change according to the different sleeping positions.
With Casper, you get free UPS delivery if you’re living in the US while the in-home delivery and installation charges the amount to a mere $150 dollars- irrespective of the items. You get a 10-year limited warranty and a 100-night return policy, which is enough for the manufacturers to prove their trust in their product.
What we like:
- Provides a great lift for back, side, and combination sleepers
- The zoned support provides a luxurious comfort
- It provides a balanced feel between pressure relief and support
What we don’t:
- It isn’t bouncy enough for some people
- Not great for stomach sleepers
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The Nectar Mattress is the sole production of the American company, Nectar Sleep. They have put many many mattress manufacturers out of business by offering premium quality at a low price. What else would one demand in a mattress except for comfort and support without an empty pocket
The Nectar Mattress offers a good cure for bed bugs infestation; its Tencel and cotton blend cooling cover is resistant to bed bugs while the cotton composition contains hypoallergenic qualities. This is a great benefit for people who are prone to seasonal allergies. Moreover, it’s luxuriously soft, and you will, undoubtedly, be offered an outstanding sleeping experience.
The first layer, beneath the cover, is made of an inch of a gel quilting foam. This provides a comfortable loft that improves air circulation and contours the body curves perfectly. This feature serves well to every sleeper and is especially recommended for side sleepers. Moreover, the premium quilting process provides a cloud-like feeling similar to the other layer that is made of 3 inches of gel memory foam.
It effectively distributes your body weight to align your spine perfectly and relieves your pressure points- great for sciatica patients. The manufacturers use the most premium quality gel foam, Lush Foam, that soaks the accumulated body heat and distributes it evenly so you can sleep on a cool surface.
Moving on, one of their unique features is the next layer that comprises of 0.5-inch of an adaptive hi-core memory foam layer. It is quite thick and serves as the inner layer for pressure point relief. This is optimal for people suffering from sciatica as this layer will work wonders for their backache. Moreover, it provides sturdy support to obese people due to its density by preventing it from sinking in too deep.
The last layer consists of 5.5 inches of a breathing base foam that has special channels, allowing the air to pass through freely — this aids in minimizing the off-gassing odor while increasing the mattress’s life expectancy.
Nectar has gone above and beyond with their 365 days trial period compared to a trial period that ranges from 90-120 of the other renowned companies. This is the perfect display of a manufactures trust in their mattress, and to prove this even further, they have provided a lifetime warranty; it offers a cover replacement and a” bed bug replacement guarantee.” Surprising right?
The dense structural layers work together to provide remarkable edge support. You sure wouldn’t want to fall over the bed during the night, especially if you have an inflamed sciatic nerve. The high density creates minimal compression under bodyweight, allowing you to switch your position easily. Furthermore, the various foam layers absorb the vibrations of motion so you wouldn’t have to wake up during the night disturbed by your partner’s movements.
What we like:
- It offers an amazing motion isolation
- It has a cool sleeping surface hence, great for hot sleepers
- It is quite affordable
- It is recommended for heavy sleepers
- Has a great edge support
What we don’t:
- Not recommended for lightweight people due to its firmness
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The Temper-Cloud Prima is a great option for sciatica patients who want a low budget mattress. This is the cheapest mattress in their series, yet one of the most reliable ones in the market. Prima provides relief from the frequent morning aches and priorities the sleepers comfort over the other features.
After years of constant innovations, they came up with one of the industry’s best materials known as Tempur. It is a patented foam that is responsive regardless of individuals personal features. Therefore, sleepers of all weights and sizes can use it, without sacrificing their comfort. Tempur is made of open-celled viscoelastic polyurethane foam and conforms to the body shape better than other foams.
The first layer is basically a high-loft cover, comprising of innovative two-layer construction. The cover is the first contact you’ll have with the much wanted Tempur-Pedic experience. It effectively draws the moisture away and maintains a cool temperature throughout the night, proving to be am an optimal choice for hot sleepers. Moving on to the second layer, this comfort layer is made of 1.2 inches extra soft Tempur-ES material with a density of 4.1 lbs/cu ft. As a result, you are provided with the most cushioned layer in the market. Feeling special yet?
The second layer comprises a 1.6-inch thick TEMPUR support layer that has a density of 5.3 lbs/cu ft. The manufacturers have gone above and beyond to build a layer that hugs your body while evenly distributing your weight.
These layers are supported by a 5.5-inch thick base airflow system that provides a solid foundation. The Cloud Prima features a medium-firm level, which is great for almost all sleepers. It alleviates the pressure points and prevents any sciatica triggers.
This Tempur-Pedic mattress reduces motion transfer by absorbing the vibrations and limiting it from shifting to the other side. Therefore, you and your partner can now sleep peacefully without waking up due to each other’s movements.
The cover can be washed gently, if needed, but doesn’t require high maintenance. The 10-year limited warranty compensates for any physical flaws and manufacturing defects, while the 90-day sleep trial offers you enough time to achieve 100% satisfaction rate.
What we like:
- It is very affordable
- Great for people looking for a plush feel.
- It is great for all sleepers due to its medium firmness.
What we don’t:
- Not great for heavyweight people
- Has a lingering off-gassing smell
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Bear, after being founded in 2015, aimed to provide athletic customers with a premium comfort level and strong support so they could sleep peacefully throughout the night after a tough day. It is branded as a product for post-recovery but can do wonders for patients suffering from sciatica.
The Bear mattress is a 10-inch foam-based structure and contains three layers; there are two layers of polyfoam with a single layer of memory foam. They fit together and create an outstanding base that relieves pressure points with the help of its Celliant Cover that is specially made to optimize your recovery.
The Celliant cover has a soft texture to provide a snug sleeping atmosphere. It contains safe chemicals that decrease the recovery period after heavy training and regulates your body temperature by increasing the blood flow.
Under the celliant cover, there are 2 inches of memory foam with a 4-pound density. The foam allows the sleeper to sink in slowly, reducing the pressure points at the shoulder and hips within 5-6 seconds. This is a great feature for patients with sciatica and athletes looking for post-workout relief. The foam layer is infused with graphite granules that dissipate the accumulated body heat while the transitional layer, made of poly foam, prevents the upper memory foam layer from sinking in too deep. This provides you with a sturdy support base and comfort without affecting your spine alignment and sciatic nerve. The 6-inch base layer is made of a high-density polyfoam.
These layers, after being combined together, provide a firmness level of 6.5 to 7 with a great bounce; this makes tossing around the mattress easier for stomach and back sleepers without comprising on the stable core support. The comfort layers at the top perfectly contour your body curves, letting you adopt any sleeping position.
The Bear mattress provides outstanding pressure relief and is great for patients suffering from sciatica and fibromyalgia. The polyfoam eases the tension points at the shoulders, hips, and lower back while the memory foam layer provides support to the spine. The supportive polyfoam layer positions the hips properly on top of the structure.
Furthermore, motion isolation is another important feature of a mattress. Many times, you might wake up during the night due to disturbances from your partner’s side. No one likes this; hence, the memory foam layers of the Bear mattress soak up the movements, preventing them from being felt on the other side.
The manufacturers offer you a free shipping policy so you can save some cash since the shipping costs can be high. You are also offered a 100 nights trial period with a 10-year warranty.
What we like:
- Highly recommended for athletes
- The celliant cover aids in pressure and ache relief
- Great for most sleeping positions with its medium firmness level
What we don’t:
- Not recommended for obese people
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Nest bedding is famous for manufacturing premium quality comfortable mattresses, and the Nest Bedding Alexander Hybrid Mattress is the biggest proof.
Alexander is one of the few mattresses with an innerspring coils base to be used as a” bed in a box.” It comprises of 4 layers that include an inch of a SmartFlow support polyfoam followed by 1.5 inches of either the Slow Recovery memory foam or copper-infused Energex foam with 1.5 inches of TitanChill endurance foam at the bottom. The cover contains quilted foam with stuffings of gel-infused memory foam. You can adjust the firmness level by asking the manufacturers to change the density of the foam. The firmness settings include Plush, Medium, and Luxury firm with the firmness scale pointing towards 3,5 and 8, respectively. As a result, every sleeper can benefit from the unique features of this mattress without sacrificing their basic sleeping needs, i.e., their sleeping position.
The quilting foam poly-cotton blend cover features a thermic phase change material that regulates the temperature of the mattress and keeps it cool.
The Alexander Hybrid mattress starts with 3 inches of gel-infused foam. The contouring effect of the foam mixes with the quilted covers comfort for a luxurious sleeping experience. This layer ends in a 1.5-inch thick copper-infused Energex foam. With a high Pressure Relieving Index, it is the optimal mattress for sciatica patients as it effectively reduces the painful pressure points. The 1.5-inch thick SmartFlow support system serves as the transitional layer from comfort to support, while the smart flow technology provides a smooth airflow. The relief of the top layers is best enhanced by being placed over a coil layer, and Nest knows it. Therefore, these layers are supported by the final 8-inch Quantum Edge pocketed coil system with 1,300 Leggett and Platt coils.
The entire structure serves to minimize excessive sinkage caused by foams while it effectively dissipates the accumulated body heat.
Traditional foam mattresses make it hard to toss and turn around the mattress as they immediately sink under body weight while excess bounce is bound to disturb your partners. Hence, the Nest Bedding manufacturers figured out a way to minimize motion transfer by balancing the pocketed coil unit with the Visco foam. The spring cool sets the required edge support, so you don’t roll over the bed.
What we like:
- Has a great motion isolation
- Unlimited warranty
- The firmness and thickness can be modified to suit every sleeper
- It is affordable
What we don’t:
- Has a weak edge support
- Might be heavy for some people
Buyers Guide: How To Choose The Best Mattress For Sciatica
The material of the mattress is very important. It depends on an individual’s personal preference, based on their sleeping position, budget, and firmness.
– Memory Foam
They are the most popular mattresses in the market. They provide unmatched support, pressure relief, and body contouring despite the issue of heat retention. Many modern memory foam mattresses are equipped with an additional gel layer that offers a cool laying surface, reducing the consequences of heat accumulation. Memory foam mattresses are great for people who love to cuddle and require support. The polyurethane foam is sensitive to changes in temperature. Hence, it melts under the body heat.
- it is convenient and affordable to purchase
- it easily conforms to your body shape for an even weight distribution
- alleviates your pressure points
- reduces airflow and breathability resulting in off-gassing and heat retention
- it is prone to sagging
- it is difficult and costly to maintain them
Similar to memory foam, latex mattresses are made of Latex foam without the issue of retaining heat. It offers great responsiveness, exemplary comfort, and bounce; however, the pronounced contour of memory foam is reduced. The natural rubber base makes it eco-friendly, hypoallergenic, and durable, great for people susceptible to seasonal allergies.
- The natural anti-allergen keeps it free of dust-mites and molds. Great for humid climates
- stabilizes core by letting your spine maintain its natural curves due to a slight sinking of your pelvic joints and shoulders.
- relieves pain
- poor airflow and breathability resulting in high maintenance costs
- off-gassing produces a lot of odors
- can be quite expensive and heavy
The innerspring mattresses are the oldest and the most widely used mattress type due to its affordability and firmness. It ensures a proper posture and alignment of your spine while the steel spring coils provide support and comfort. Due to content innovations in the mattress manufacturing industry, the basic structure of coil mattresses is constantly changing. The more coils there are, the better you’ll sleep. They also offer a great bounce and edge support and remains cool.
- very common hence easily available
- offers outstanding edge support compared to the other mattress types
- prevents off-gassing and odor due to good breathability and airflow
- the coils can sag. Hence it’s less durable
- they don’t conform to the body shape due to its strength and firmness
- might produce a lot of noise and motion transfer
This specific layer can be referred to as a hybrid of two materials with an extra layer of soft material stuffed or sewn on the top. This gives an extra cushioned layer for a luxurious feel and is pretty famous for people who are looking for outstanding comfort with sturdy support.
– Hybrid Mattress
A hybrid is a combination of two materials; in other words, a hybrid mattress is a combination of latex, memory foams, coils, or other materials. It offers the best of both worlds by minimizing the drawbacks of both mattress types. This is a great option for people suffering from sciatica since they can get a purpose-built hybrid mattress to reduce their pain.
- it provides a remarkable edge support
- the movement isolation feature minimizes the noise level
- It responds to movements and conforms to the body shape to relieve pain.
- the foam or latex tops hybrids provide a smooth airflow
- it reduces sinkage for a stabilized core and perfect spine alignment
- they are expensive
- if paired with memory foam, it causes unnecessary odor
- you can not adjust the firmness level
An adjustable mattress needs to be adjusted; every person has a different sleeping requirement every night. Hence, this mattress is a great investment, allowing you to change the incline by raising up the feet and bending the back. With recent innovations, the adjustable mattress is also equipped with additional features such as vibrations, massages, and heating facilities. Moreover, it’s an excellent bedding option for people with arthritis, sciatica, and allergies.
- they provide an exemplary comfort level
- it can be adjusted according to your needs every night- the slightest adjustment can make a huge difference
- arthritis and sciatica patients, people with snoring issues and morning aches will benefit greatly
- they can be quite expensive
- the complex technical operating system is prone to a lot of noise as well as huge maintenance costs
The other integral part of the buying process after choosing the material and firmness is selecting the right mattress size. It depends on your room and the number of people who’ll share the bed. It is recommended to choose a size bigger than your needs since you will be more comfortable with extra space too around throughout the night.
It is great for a single child with a small room and can be used for bunk beds.
– Twin Xl
It is a bit wider than a twin bed and is recommended if there’s a bit more space in your child’s room.
Despite being known as a double bed, it’s a slightly bigger alternative for a single kid who requires extra sleeping space. This is great if your room is too small for a queen, but a twin XL is too small for your kid.
It’s great for teenagers and can easily fit in two average-sized people. It is the most popular size since it provides a spacious sleeping space without crowding your room.
It is only 16 inches wider than a Queen Mattress and is great for large rooms.
– California King
It is huge and quite popular with celebrities due to its unique history. You have enough space to toss around as much as you want while squeezing in your kids and pets.
The firmness of your mattress is another critical factor that affects your overall sleeping experience. It takes your sleeping position into account, whereas the material of your mattress will influence the firmness greatly. Many companies have a firmness scale that rates your mattress out of 10, helping you choose the perfect fit for your needs.
– Soft (1-2)
They are the softest mattresses in the market, but the least demanded. Surprised right? So were we. They provide a cloud-like sleeping experience and exemplary body contouring, but from your healths perspective, it’s terrible for you. It lets you sink in deep and hugs your body, but there’s little to no support for core stabilization, resulting in poor spine alignment and a bad posture.
This may be good for side sleepers or lightweight sleepers as it can relieve the pressure points and won’t sink in too deep because of less weight.
– Medium (3-7)
This firmness level is divided into the medium soft and medium firm levels. Medium soft mattresses are great for combination sleepers as they offer additional core support compared to soft mattresses. As a result, it won’t sink in immediately under body weight but will gradually conform to your body shape.
Furthermore, people looking for strong support, along with some comfort, can opt for its medium-firm counterpart. It offers you the best of both worlds by providing every sleeper with the perfect balance between contouring and support.
– Firm (7-10)
Many mattress manufacturers don’t offer this level of firmness, but according to our research, it’s not really demanded. They symbolize discomfort and body pains; however, it is the optimal mattress for people looking for outstanding spinal support as well as sciatica patients. They do not conform to your body curves; hence, they are an excellent choice for the stomach, back, and obese sleepers since it keeps your spine aligned throughout the night.
You need to consider your sleeping place while choosing your mattress.
– Side Sleepers
The shoulders and hips of side sleepers are the first to come in contact with the mattress, creating two exit points for the body pressure. This creates an unnatural curve in your spine that is not recommended for sciatica patients. The wrong mattress reduces the amount of support, resulting in a formation of pressure points, and tension will accumulate in your back, shoulders, hips, and neck. Therefore, a medium level of firmness is perfect for you as it will contour your body and not cause pressure points.
– Stomach Sleepers
Stomach sleepers put a lot of pressure on their hips and pelvic region and result in an odd flattening of the spinal core because weak support leads your midsection to sink (a major sciatica trigger). Your mattress should equally distribute your weight. Hence, a firm mattress is the best for this job.
– Back Sleepers
The back sleeping position is preferred due to its overall well-being benefits. Back sleepers spread out their body weight more evenly, automatically lowering your risk of developing pressure points. As a result, you can choose from a range of mattress types, without the risk of pain and discomfort. However, you should still pay attention to firmness and support to properly align your spine. Go for mattresses that fall somewhere in the medium-firm to firm range since they offer support, without compromising on your comfort.
– Motion isolation
Motion isolation is a vital factor to consider if you are sleeping with a partner; constant tossing and turning around produces a lot of movement and sound that transfers to your partner’s side, doesn’t sound good right?
The movement isolation in your mattress will localize and absorb your movements so your partner won’t feel any vibrations. The memory foam, latex, and innerspring mattresses aren’t the best options for people looking for an extra bounce, but they are perfect for minimizing motion transfer since they restrict the movement to only one side of the bed.
– Edge support
Edge support is often overlooked as a feature but is extremely important. A mattress without any edge support will lead to excessive linkage, making it easier for people to topple over. The people sleeping at the end of the bed are susceptible to the danger of falling over during the night and trust us; you will not like it. The Latex and memory foam mattresses offer the least edge support, and the material isn’t recommended for hot sleepers either due to its heat retention issue. To encounter a deep stage of sleep, body temperature should be lower than usual. No, your chosen mattress will not result in a decrease in your body temperature, but it promotes a smooth airflow leading to minimal body heat absorption.
FAQs: About Sciatica
Q: Is a hard or soft bed Better for Sciatica?
A: The firmness of your mattress plays an important part if you’re suffering from sciatica. It is measured on a scale of 1-10 and symbolizes comfort. According to research, firm mattresses are recommended for heavyweight people as it provides a comfortable sleeping surface without sinking it deeply; this results in a proper support base. Soft mattresses are better for lighter individuals since they will sink in deep enough for adequate comfort. A firm mattress for lightweight sciatica patients may result in excessive pressure points due to a lack of conforming.
Q: What is the best sleep position for sciatica?
A: Sciatica patients find their pain to increase after lying down. This is the result of an odd spine movement and excess pressure placed on the spinal area. Your sleeping position can alleviate your sciatic pain by reducing spinal compression. Back sleepers allow the spine to rest in a natural position; they don’t require pillows; however, sciatica patients may use a wedge pillow to relieve the pressure in their pelvic area. Side sleepers, on another hand, will require several pillows to maintain their spine’s natural position. The sleeping position builds pressure on the spine due to an odd flattening of the core. This position is, by far, the worst.
Q: What triggers sciatica?
A: Sciatica is the result of a herniated disc or an overgrowth of a bone spur on your vertebrae. In some cases, the nerve is compressed due to tumor or diabetes. The risk factors of sciatica are
- Age-related changes that affect your spine
- Obese people run the risk of increasing the risk on their spinal area, resulting in sciatica-triggering changes
- Jobs where you twist your back, carry weighted objects or that require you to sit still for long periods of time
- A sedentary lifestyle
- Diabetes- it can cause significant nerve damage in the long run
Q: Why is sciatica so painful at night?
A: Sciatica is painful, no doubt about that. However, if you find the pain getting worse with each passing night, your sleeping habits may be the culprit. A fetal or curled position causes the vertebrae in your lower back to pinch your sciatic nerve.
Pregnant women and overweight people may find sciatica to be painful since there is extra pressure on their spine and back muscles. Side sleepers sleep with a curve in the spine, and due to this unnatural shape, the nerve gets inflamed.
In short, an unusual sleeping position and body factors can negatively affect your sleeping pattern with extreme discomfort and pain.
Sciatica is a backache with a higher intensity. It is caused by diabetes, herniated discs, and is affected by one’s weight and age. In short, living with sciatica can be nerve-wracking. Therefore, to make your life relatively easier, a good sleeping mattress is recommended to reduce the pain.
Our list of the best mattresses for sciatica contains mattresses by renowned companies, specially made for such patients. We aim to make the buying process easier for you; hence, along with the list, we have also provided a buying guide with the important factors to consider while purchasing a mattress.